27 November 2015

Temporary legislation is to be introduced in Sweden to restrict the number of people seeking asylum to the ‘EU minimum’.

With Sweden having taken the largest number of asylum seekers per capita of all countries in the EU over the last few years, the government announced these new measures in response to the strain public authorities and municipalities have found themselves under. Swedish authorities have been unable to guarantee shelter for all people arriving on the territory. Equally, there are major challenges facing Swedish social services, schools and trauma care centres.

These measures are to last for the next three years, and include only offering temporary residence permits to refugees, restricting the laws relating to family reunification and medically verifying the age of all unaccompanied minors. It is also foreseen that ID checks will be carried out on all modes of transport to Sweden.

The Swedish government has said that these measures are not seen as a long-term way forward, and called for all EU countries to take a shared responsibility for refugee reception. They also called for the Dublin Regulation to be revised and replaced by a permanent relocation scheme in the EU.

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This article appeared in the ECRE Weekly Bulletin of 27 November 2015. You can subscribe to the Weekly Bulletin here.