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Gaddafi crackdown may boost asylum seeker bids

Libyans applying for asylum in Switzerland will have a good chance of being accepted, the Federal Migration Office has said.

So far 11 Libyans have filed applications for asylum since the start of the uprising in the country.

But because of the use of force by Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi against the population, it is foreseeable that requests from Libyans will be accepted and they will be granted refugee status, Joachim Gross, spokesman for the Federal Migration Office told the Swiss News Agency, confirming an article in the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper.

More Tunisians have also been applying for asylum since the revolution in their country began. There were 159 applications from Tunisians in March, 48 in February and 44 in January.

Gross noted that each case would be examined individually, and “economic refugees” would not be granted asylum.

The Migration Office expects a rise in refugees coming from other Arab nations. The office director, Alard du Bois-Reymond, is expected to discuss the issue with his counterpart on a visit to Rome this month.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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