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Dangerous asylum-seekers to be deported

Asylum seekers at a reception centre in Kreuzlingen one year ago Keystone

Switzerland is making final preparations for the deportation of 50 Kosovo Albanians deemed to be potentially violent or dangerous. They are due to be put on a special flight from Zurich to Pristina early on Tuesday.

This content was published on June 19, 2000 - 07:06

A spokesman for the federal refugee office said the green light was expected to come from the United Nations mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). The spokesman, Dominique Boillat, said a specially chartered aircraft was on standby to fly the refugees home.

The 50 deportees will be accompanied by 34 policemen and officials from the refugee office. Boillat said 11 were convicted criminals, and were likely to be restrained on the flight with handcuffs to prevent any violence.

The expulsions are being carried out under Switzerland's policy to repatriate asylum-seekers who were granted temporary shelter during last year's Kosovo conflict. Many have left voluntarily or leave without putting up any resistance.

Boillat said three to four planes left every day without any problems. He said special measures have to be taken for only one per cent of all those being deported.

The special flight is only the second of its kind in three months. In April, 58 people were forcibly repatriated to Pristina.

by Malcolm Shearmur

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