From Iceland — Interior Minister Harshly Criticised In Parliament, Asylum Seeker Will Be Deported

Interior Minister Harshly Criticised In Parliament, Asylum Seeker Will Be Deported

Published December 17, 2013

Left-Green chairperson Katrín Jakobsdóttir questioned Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir as to how an unofficial ministry document on an asylum seeker ended up leaked to the press, saying that the matter “harms public trust in institutions that we have to trust.”
DV reports that Katrín, speaking in parliament yesterday, said, “I don’t intend to sit in judgment, but I do want to say that it is not good that files which could harm individuals are leaked to the press, not just because of this one particular case, but also because it harms public trust in institutions that we have to trust and are the foundations of the society that we live in.”
As reported, a document was issued last month from the ministry to selected members of the press contending that Nigerian asylum seeker Tony Omos – who was facing deportation and in hiding from police at the time – was connected to a human trafficking case earlier this summer, and that he is not actually the father of his girlfriend Evelyn Glory Joseph’s expected child. The document contended furthermore that Evelyn was pressured by Tony to say he is the child’s father.
None of these accusations proved to be true – in fact, Stefán Karl Kristjánsson, Tony’s lawyer, told reporters, “My client was investigated, denied the charges against him, and within the documents it shows that the investigation was dropped.” Evelyn also insisted to reporters that Tony was indeed the father of her child, who is expected to be born next month.
Katrín then directly asked the minister how the leak was being investigated and whether the minister herself was going to see to it that the matter is resolved, adding, “This is a sensitive matter where we have to trust that the administration works.”
Hanna Birna responded by saying that while the document was confidential, such confidential files are passed between numerous institutions and individuals, from lawyers to the police to the Directorate of Immigration. She added furthermore that neither she nor any ministry employees could find record of the memo in question.
However, recent investigations contradict the minister’s implication, as it seems the memo could have only come from the ministry.
In related news, RÚV reports that the Supreme Court has ruled that Tony – who recently turned himself in – will be deported from Iceland. He is to remain in custody until he is put on a plane to Nigeria.
“I’ve received a message from people in Nigeria that I have been suspected of taking part in human trafficking,” Tony recently told reporters. “This has in reality ruined my reputation. I don’t understand how the ministry could do that to me. I don’t understand Iceland.”
For more on this story, see Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here.

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