Venstre immigration policies could breach international law, experts warn

Discriminating on the basis of nationality could get party in hot water

The article is written with Syrian refugees, among others, in mind (photo: iStock)
August 1st, 2014 11:38 am| by admin
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Experts are warning Venstre about the legality of the immigration policies they are pursuing, Politiken reports. The paper has in its possession a leaked internal communication from the party that states that their policies would “challenge and discuss the scope” of international conventions.

Kåre Traberg Smidt, a defence lawyer who specialises in human rights, explained to Politiken his concerns. “It is very problematic,” he said.

“Of course we should have people in who can contribute something, but under special circumstances to break international conventions is an extremely dangerous way to go. It is breaking from international consensus that has taken decades to build up.”

Some nationalities more ‘integration-friendly’ than others?
Venstre wants to differentiate between immigrants from western countries and those from elsewhere. The party also wants to make it easier for immigrants from a list of western countries who have a job that pays more than 200,000 kroner per year.

Bjørn Dilou Jacobsen, a legal expert specialising in immigration law pointed out to Politiken that the Supreme Court has definitively ruled that Denmark cannot break international conventions. He believes that the Venstre proposal is dangerously close to doing so. “The Venstre and Konservative government introduced an immigration test, where some countries were exempt,” he said.

“The idea was apparently that some nationalities were more integration-friendly than others. I definitely think that was a serious violation of international conventions. And the new proposals are reminiscent of that.”

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