Somali piracy is the new illegal migrant gateway to Europe.
It would be unacceptable if three Somali men convicted of piracy were to be given refugee status in the Netherlands, according to VVD parliamentarians.
‘These troublemakers should be thrown out of the country as quickly as possible,’ MP Malik Azmani said. The pirates have been released from jail but will not be deported because their applications for asylum are still being processed.
The situation is too bizarre for words, Azmani said. ‘First you shoot at Dutch soldiers and then you request asylum here,’ he is quoted as saying. ‘It is unacceptable that these criminals want to remain here.’
The three are part of a group of nine Somali pirates jailed for 4.5 years in 2011 after going on trial in the Netherlands. Having served two-thirds of their sentence, they have now been released from jail.
Geert-Jan Knoops, an international criminal law attorney and professor at the Royal University of Utrecht, has suggested that the Dutch trial might encourage pirates to surrender just in order to seek a better life in Western countries.
“These trials may trigger other pirates to let themselves be arrested on purpose,” he told the Volkskrant newspaper.
Great plan. Let’s have the pirates move to the country. Surely they’ll take up croquet and not armed robbery.
But since Somalia has a record of international human rights violations it will be almost impossible to deport the men after their conviction in the Netherlands.
This is what life in the EU looks like.
“Life is good here,” said one of the defendants, named Sayid, about his experience in a Dutch jail.
Willem-Jan Ausma, a Dutch defence attorney who is representing another pirate, described his client’s relief to be in a Western prison.
“My client feels safe here. His own village is dominated by poverty and sharia [Islamic law] but here he has good food and can play football and watch television. He thinks the lavatory in his cell is fantastic,” he said.
“He intends to send for his wife and children as soon as he is released from prison. He knows he cannot easily be sent back to Somalia. He loves it here in the Netherlands,” Mr Ausma told the NRC Handelsblad newspaper.
Next time don’t take them alive.