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The Seimas Ombudsman encourages respecting human rights in Foreigners Registration Center

URCThe respect for the human being and his/her rights should not depend on his / her nationality or origin”- this view was shared by the Seimas Ombudsman Augustinas Normantas on the World Refugee Day drawing attention to the acute problems in Foreigners Registration Center.

After the visit to the Foreigners Registration Center, the Seimas Ombudsman came to a conclusion that there were no separate premises ensured both for the refugees and detained immigrants.

Also the Seimas Ombudsman identified poor implementation of requirements for living premises and hygiene norms: “There are less than five square meters for each person in the Centre; the premises are not heated enough. The natural and artificial light does not meet the minimum requirements”.

Mr. A. Normantas reminds that a refugee is a person who is outside his/her home country because he/she has suffered from persecution on the grounds of race, religion, nationality or he/she is a member of a persecuted social group or because he/she is fleeing from a war, “So any violations of national or international laws ensuring the rights of these persons should not be tolerated”, - noted A. Normantas.

The Seimas Ombudsman recommends implementing all required means to ensure the minimum of living requirements for aliens in Foreigners Registration Center: “Officials should consider a possibility to separate vulnerable and conflicting people." The officials of the Foreigners Registration Center are urged to ensure the heating and cleanliness of the premises.

Furthermore, A. Normantas encourages to ensure the right of religion to refugees by providing meals for refugees that is in compliance with their religious and cultural beliefs. The ombudsman noted that although the Foreigners Registration Center ensures the right to (free) movement and the occupation of refugees, not all foreigners are involved in occupational programs.

“The Foreigners Registration Center should ensure the refugee’s right to exercise his/herreligion,” – noted the ombudsman in his recommendations. Additionally, the Foreigners Registration Center should amend the regulation on the use of force and special means. “The Foreigners Registration Center should define in detail when and in what conditions force and special means might be used. They should be used only in exceptional cases,” - pointed out the ombudsman.

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