Norway: After 8 years, asylum seeker can stay

Besides this case showing the incompetence of Norwegian immigration authorities - I'm not sure I understand why this guy is an asylum seeker. His mother had lived in Montenegro all this time, he plans to visit there, doesn't sound like he needs asylum.

Oslo's court has overturned a ruling by the Immigration Appeals Board (UNE) to send a 34-year-old Montenegrin out of Norway, after the UNE used eight years on his case. The court's verdict blasted the UNE and the Directorate of Immigration (UDI), but the relevant authorities have not appeared to question the job they did. "With the massive and repeated errors and oversights that have occurred in this case, the court finds the UNE's decision clearly unreasonable. One simply cannot treat people in such a way without it having consequences for decisions," the court ruled. Over at last Ilir Mustafaj is relieved that his ordeal is over, but still wonders why it happened. "This has taken a frighteningly long time. The last four years have been psychological terror and I don't know why it happened," Mustafaj told UNE director Terje Sjeggestad has said that the verdict will not be appealed, so Ilir Mustafaj can live in Norway, news that could communicate to him on Wednesday morning. "That was good to hear. It was very good to get that verdict. I am glad I found someone who could examine the case objectively," Mustafaj said. The eight year process had left the 34-year-old isolated in Norway, without documents that would allow him to leave the country. "The sad thing is that I could not go to my mother's funeral last month, but now I can at least visit her grave," he said. Long ordeal
In the course of Mustafaj's eight-year struggle to gain residency, he was denied travel documents, mistakenly given extended permission to work, received an UDI invitation to extend his residency, and had an application to re-extend his residency lost for two years by the UDI. While the process dragged on, Mustafaj learned Norwegian and found a steady job. The court pointed out that Sweden fully processed and returned unsuccessful asylum seekers in the time it took the UDI to find the applications papers they had lost. Mustafaj has no special plans for his future in Norway. He lives in Larvik and works at Schenker Linjegods in Sandefjord. "I have a steady job and am doing fine. Maybe I can buy an apartment. And I would like to visit my homeland," Mustafaj said. A demanding case
UNE director Sjeggestad told that the case had been a difficult one, that involved many complex questions. "The background of the case is rather special and we don't believe it will set a negative precedence if the court's ruling stands," Sjeggestad told about the decision. Sjeggestad said that the initial ruling had been a split decision within the UNE and that the case had been particularly complicated. Sjeggestad said that this complexity was the explanation for the criticism the UNE had received in the ruling. "As far as the criticism of the routines and the procedural errors by the UDI, the UDI will have to answer that themselves. As far as the ruling goes, we have concluded that it should not be appealed," Sjeggestad said. The UDI said that all questions about the matter should be referred to the UNE.

Source: Aftenposten (English)

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