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    So-called 'Fortune Hunters' Face Tough New Immigration Rules in Norway

    So-called 'Fortune Hunters' Face Tough New Immigration Rules in Norway

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    Norway's government is set to tighten its strict immigration policy. The ruling right wing Progress Party wants to make foreigners wait longer before they become eligible for permanent residency.

    Justice Minister Anders Anundsen, from the Progress Party told VG newspaper:

    "The proposal will probably result in more foreigners being expelled as a result of criminal offences and violations of the Immigration Act, since it will take longer, before the foreigner obtains greater protection against expulsion."

    The new rules would mean expats working in Norway would lose their permanent residency status if they divorced their Norwegian partner within five years of being married. It will also make life even harder for asylum seekers fleeing persecution.

    A recent report by the Institute of Race Relations revealed that 23 asylum seekers died in Norway in the last five years. Twenty two migrants died in Norway's immigration reception centers — their identity unknown.

    'Fortune Hunters'

    "Concerns have been expressed about Norway's detention of asylum seekers, including children, and its prioritizing of returns over children's welfare. Politician's use of phrases such as 'fortune hunters' to describe refugees, and moves to deport many Eritrean refugees, have also been condemned," the report said.

    Under the current system in Norway, anyone who lives there for three years is eligible to apply for a permanent residence and work permit. But only if they complete a series of compulsory courses and can speak the language proficiently.

    The tough new immigration measures are likely to affect people coming from countries outside the European Union. 

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    Tags:
    persecution, language proficiency, work conditions, human rights, racism, employment, detention, asylum seekers, asylum, refugees, migrants, immigration, Eritrea, Europe, Norway
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