Denmark sees drop in number of residency permits withdrawn from foreign nationals

Denmark has a seen a fall in the number of residency permits withdrawn from foreign nationals, despite a stricter political approach, new figures show.

Denmark sees drop in number of residency permits withdrawn from foreign nationals
File photo: Erik Refner/Ritzau Scanpix

Figures from the Danish Immigration Service (Udlændingestyrelsen, DIS) and reported by newspaper Kristeligt Dagblad show a reduction in withdrawal of residency from refugees, compared to last year.

In 2018, 463 refugees and residents under family reunification rules lost their right to reside in Denmark, through either withdrawal of residency or denial of its extension. This year, the figure had reached 183 persons up to and including October 1st.

An extrapolation of that figure for the rest of the year would see the number of withdrawn residencies halved compared to 2018.

Factors affecting the statistic include a programme to look closely at the right of Somali nationals to remain resident in Denmark, according to Peter Starup, a specialist in immigration law at the University of Southern Denmark.

The programme does not have many more cases awaiting assessment, Starup told Kristeligt Dagblad.

But the professor also said that the ‘paradigm shift’ policy on refugees, established under the previous government, would not necessarily increase the number of withdrawn residencies.

‘Paradigm shift’ immigration politics hold that refugees should be sent back to their home countries as soon as it is deemed safe by authorities to do so, as opposed to prioritizing integration through areas such as language learning and jobs schemes.


“The paradigm shift does not mean that residency permits will automatically be withdrawn. Specific, individual assessments must still be made and security in home countries must be looked at,” Starup said to Kristeligt Dagblad.

“If people have a family in Denmark or have been here a long time, that is still an argument for (allowing them) to stay,” he added.

The paradigm shift law provides for spending to the tune of 100 million kroner with the goal of increasing residency withdrawal by DIS, according to the report.

That includes screening of up to 300 cases per year to assess whether refugees from countries including Syria, Somalia and Afghanistan still fulfil the requirements for asylum in Denmark.

READ ALSO: Danish refugee board allows Syrians to retain asylum status


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