BAD ‘INTEREST’ OF THE REPUBLIC OF POLAND?
It has not been so long ago that a decision about granting asylum to the Norwegian woman is only formality. This January the chief of the Office for Foreigners officially decided that family life protected by the international law is endangered now, so there are objective premises to assume that granting asylum to Silije Garmo and her little daughter Eir Garmo is essential to provide her with protection.
Theoretically only a statement of the foreign minister is required by the Office for Foreigners, that protection of a mother and a child remains in ‘the interest of the Republic of Poland’. And here the persecuted Norwegian woman faced up a problem as the chief of the Foreign Ministry Jacek Czaputowicz has probably a different opinion. The decision about Silije Garmo is to be made on 22 July this year.
It is unofficially said that Silije Garmo will not receive an asylum in the Republic of Poland as Norway is strongly insisting on it. At the end of June the minister met with a new ambassador of Norway in the Republic of Poland. A note of that meeting was not concealed but the ministry wants to reveal the content of the talk. – The note of the meeting of the minister Czaputowicz with the ambassador Olav Myklebust is a working document, made for the usage only by the Foreign Ministry, thus it is not supposed to be made available within the act about the access to public information – the office of the press spokesman of the Foreign Ministry responded to ‘Niedziela’.
During the asylum proceeding we find argumentation based mainly on the evaluation of political and economic interests, with exclusion of significance of protecting human rights breached by the Norwegian Office for Care of Children – Barnevernet (BV). – There is a prevailing opinion, according to which in the analysis of legitimacy of the appeal made by Silije Garmo for granting asylum it is necessary to include the rank and significance of political relations of Poland with Norway – says an attorney Jerzy Kwaśniewski, the chairperson of the Institute for Legal Culture Ordo Iuris, which gave legal help to the Norwegian woman. – In the situation when the Office for Foreigners clearly stated that there are objective premises to grant asylum and protection to Silije Garmo, it is difficult to perceive the opinion of the Foreign Ministry officials as good, according to whom granting asylum may cause raising accusations towards Poland as a country which differentiates foreigners.
According to the attorney Kwaśniewski, the issue of the Norwegian woman is practically unsucccessful for political reasons, not the legal ones. But beside her, there are also a lot Poles living in Norway who are victims, and who are deprived of their children by Barnevernet without any justification. Since 2012 issues faced up towards the BV concerned even 29 citizens of Poland, among whom Polish diplomats registered lots of breaches of under-aged Poles’ rights, resulting from the international and national law.
It seemed that the situation will be dealt with by the Polish government when a few weeks ago some force was used towards the director of the Polish embassy in Oslo – Sławomir Kowalski. Officials of the BV breached physical integrity of the Polish diplomat when he was trying to meet with a Polish child. It seemed natural that the diplomatic scandal and others would be a topic of a talk between the chief of the Foreign Ministry and the ambassador of Norway. However, according to the laconic answer from the ministry, nothing like that had taken place. – If this scandal is not mentioned by the chief of the Polish diplomacy during his meetings with the ambassador, no diplomat in Norway will dare to stand up for Poles and Polish families. These are very sad conclusions, especially for our compatriots living abroad. Are Poles really in the interest of the Republic of Poland? – the attorney Kwaśniewski asks rhetorically.
Translated by Aneta Amrozik
Niedziela 29/2018 (22 VII 2018)