Migri: Asylum seekers arrive from Malta as part of EU deal

The latest group of new arrivals are part of a deal between Finland and the EU to help relieve pressure on Mediterranean countries with high numbers of asylum seekers.

File picture of Migri logo on glass door / Credit: Migri Twitter

The Finnish Immigration Agency Migri confirms that a group of asylum seekers has arrived in the country from Malta.

The group of single-parent families include 25 people transferred from the Mediterranean island as part of an EU deal where Finland agreed to take 175 asylum seekers from different countries, and process their claims here.

The move is designed to alleviate some of the pressures on camps for migrants in countries like Malta, Italy and Greece, and involves mostly children or single-parent families.

A total of 131 asylum seekers have so far arrived in Finland under the terms of this deal.

Migrants in Malta

During 2020 Malta has been reluctant to accept more asylum seekers or migrants, who make perilous crossings from the North African coast to the island, due to coronavirus restrictions.

Some migrants were housed temporarily on boats which were chartered from a pleasure cruise company called Captain Morgan, and being held offshore, which the government said was part of a Covid-19 quarantine period.

However international organisations, including human rights groups, said the refugees were being held on the passenger ferries longer than necessary and the UN Refugee Agency called on the Maltese government to bring those migrants to shore, in line with international law.