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rutor 2018 februari
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Vulnerable groups

We see that very little regard is taken to the specific vulnerabilities of some asylum seekers during the assessment of an asylum claim. The result of ignoring asylum seekers’ physical and cognitive disabilities is that their protection grounds are also ignored. Thus, mentally and physically impaired asylum seekers, whose state effectively contributes to their vulnerability in the midst of an armed conflict, are deported to such conflicts without their vulnerabilities being taken into regard.

Asylum seekers who are traumatized or mentally ill face other obstacles during the assessment of their asylum claims. Having fragmentized or repressed memories, to mix up dates or to not be able to recount experiences until after they have been processed in therapy are viewed as factors which impair the credibility of the asylum seeker’s grounds for asylum, rather than being seen as a sign of trauma. When the asylum seekers actually manage to bring their condition to the attention of the decision maker, the condition is not assessed as a contributing factor to the protection needs of the applicant but rather as an independent claim for protection on humanitarian - and thereby insufficient - grounds.

Unaccompanied minors are considered as vulnerable and with special protection needs. However, on the day that they turn 18 they are expected to be able to return to their country of origin or their parents’ country of origin and to provide for themselves without any existing network in that country. They are no longer considered to be at risk of being abused or recruited to armed factions. Meanwhile, they are forced to leave a life behind in Sweden that they have built for themselves during some of the most formative years of their lives.

 

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