Norway: The first Norwegian speaking asylum seeker

The original headline for this article, whose summary I bring below, was "lawyer paid for illegal trip". However, besides the legal problems involved in having a lawyer help an illegal immigrant enter the country, I bring this article since it's another interesting example of how much people will do to come to Europe. In this case, the illegal immigrant in question already felt Norwegian.


Khadije Ravandost, originally from Kurdistan, lived in Norway from the age of 7 to 14, in Oslo and Sarpsborg, living the life of any Norwegian girl. When she was 15 she went with her uncle, mother, big sister and little brother on a trip to Iraq, supposedly just for a few weeks. However, as it turns out, they were deceived by the uncle, who was the head of the family. He took them to his home in northern Iran. There the girls were told they were not going back - they were going to get married in Iran.

The transition wasn't easy. "We didn't go to school, we weren't allowed to go anywhere alone. We had to dress in full-lengths cloths and cover up everyting," Khadije says.

She refused to marry a middle-aged man her uncle found for her, and for that got a beating. After a while she realized she'll have to get married if she wanted to get back to Norway, but she insisted on choosing her husband herself. She had never thought she'll get married at 16.

In the end she chose Ako Saraban. His family was more modern and she was allowed to a large degree to be herself, though her uncle continue to bother them.

Khadije and her husband decided to take their son, soon to be two, and get to Norway illegally. The dangerous route went from North Iran, over the mountains to Turkey, by airplane to South Turkey to Istanbul with false papers. The from Izmir by boat to Athens. 103 people traveled together for 3 months. The trip cost 25,000 kroner (~ $4200) per adult and half that for children.

According to the agreement they were supposed to get to Italy, but the Greek police stopped their boat from Athens. They had to leave Greece within a month. Khadije rang a lawyer in Norway her sister had contact with, Randi Spydevold.

Spydevold got together 120,000 kroner (~$20,000) and sent it to Khadije, with the money going to pay for the illegal trip to Norway. She also organized for them lodging.

She also organized for them lodgin via the Norwegian Seaman's Church and got an apartment for them from the University of Oslo.

"I couldn't understand that some unknown Norwegian people could be so nice," says Khadije.

Within three months, she and Ako had used the money to get false papers and plane tickets for Athens-Copenhagen-Oslo.

Khadije Ravandost did not have Norwegian citizenship when she lived in Norway, just permanent residency, but she lost it after being abroad more than two years. Therefore, upon arrival in Norway, she had to ask for asylum.

"It was the first time the police had met a Norwegian speaking asylum seeker," says Khadije.

If she had made contact with Norwegian authorities within two years after going aboard, she would have kept her residency premit. Khadije says that it took half a year till their uncle let them use the phone, and then they tried reaching the embassy, but got no help.

She says she and her sister also made contact with friends in Norway, the police, Sarpsborg municipality, Child Welfare and the Norwegian immigration service, but got no reply.

Her asylum request is now being processed. Khadije says she wants to study medicine and then get a job as a doctor. Her sister stayed in Iran with her husband and children. She recently got a rejection for her request to come back to Norway.

Source: Aftenposten (Norwegian)

See also: Norway: If at first you don't succeed..

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yes, this case is very typical case of the seeking of comfortable life, full of enjoy. But let's look it closely, there are thousand of people and all the want to Europe, why, for easy life and more money and more expenditure. Account the capital principle there must no occur inequality between the people, so, if one get in, why not the other. That simply means that the whole population from the eastern courtiers is allowed to get the tutus of asylum. It also means that there will be soon deserted countries beyond the Mediterranean.