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Monday, 21 September, 2020
Home NATIONALRefugees stage demonstration in Oulu
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Thu, 01 Oct, 2015 02:17:12 AM
FTimes- STT Report, Oct 1
 
A number of asylum seekers in Oulu held a protest in front of the police department building on Wednesday evening.Photo Lehtikuva.
A number of asylum seekers held a protest on Wednesday evening in front of the police department building in Oulu.
 
Deputy police boss Arto Karnaranta said the asylum seekers were dissatisfied with the food and accommodation conditions.
 
“The reason is a clear dissatisfaction with food and conditions. This is the main reason what they have told us,” Karnaranta said.
 
A police officer who had spoken to the protesters through an interpreter told the Finnish language tabloid Ilta-Sanomat that the police have compiled a list of complaints which will be forwarded to the management running the emergency asylum shelter.
 
According to the Ilta-Sanomat, the protesters told the police that they are unhappy with the food served, health services and the unhygienic condition at the emergency reception centre facility, among other things. The protesters also complained of slow pace in processing their cases.
 
The police said the demonstration was observed peacefully. The procession started at the emergency reception centre located in Hiukkavaara district of Oulu.
 
According to the emergency reception unit’s deputy director, Janne Salmivaara, the situation began to develop during the evening meal.
 
“During the evening meal, a few asylum seekers felt the food served was not desirable or worthwhile,” Salmivaara said.
 
Salmivaara said it was noisy but not violent or threatening. The majority of about 330 asylum seekers sheltered at the reception centre ate their food peacefully.
 
“The meal was barley semolina porridge. It is quite a normal institutional meal which is served in schools and institutions. There is no significant issue with that,” said Salmivaara.
 
Salmivaara estimated that about 60 asylum seekers went out to protest in front of the police building. The distance to the police station is less than 10 kilometres.
 
The police were notified about the procession at around 4:30 pm and by 8:00 pm the protest was over.
 
“The protesters were dispersed from the scene to the reception centre with the help of transportation arranged by the police,” reads a police statement.
 
Salmivaara pointed out that normalcy resumed at the reception centre at around 9:00 pm.
 
“The situation has calmed down and tomorrow we will continue as normal,” Salmivaara said.
 
The police detained one person during the protest.
 
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