Imran Firasat arrested in Norway
by Ingrid Carlqvist
The Pakistani Imran Firasat fled to Norway when Spain decided revoked his asylum status. For a week he thought that Norway would grant him a safe haven – then he was apprehended and jailed.
– His fate is highly uncertain, says a Norwegian who talked to Imran Firasat before his arrest.
In several articles Dispatch International has reported on Imran Firasat, the Pakistani who fled his country because the Islamic authorities forbid him to marry his Buddhist girl friend. He came to Spain and was granted asylum.
A few years ago, Firasat converted to Christianity and stepped up his critique of Islam. He has made a number of films about Islam and Muhammed, causing his life to be even more endangered than when he left Pakistan. And it appears to be his criticism of Islam that has given Spain cold feet.
Last year Firasat's asylum status was suddenly revoked. The case went all the way to the Supreme Court, which dismissed his appeal and decided that het could no longer stay in Spain. The court based its decision on the law that makes it possible to deprive a person of his residence permit if he is deemed to constitute a danger to the country's security.
When Dispatch talked to Firasat in June, he said that at no time did the Spanish Supreme Court explain how he could be a danger to Spanish security. Two judges dissented and thought that his case should be sent to the EU Court for a final decision.
– My lawyer is very dissatisfied with the outcome and we are going to sue Spain in the European Court of Human Rights. I'm sure they will decide in my favor, said Imran Firasat at the time.
Then he fled Spain and went underground. On July 8 this year he turned up in Oslo, entered a police station and demanded political asylum. According to sources who met with him, he was very pleased with his reception and his stay at a transit home for refuges.
The police questioned him for two hours and Imran Firasat reported everything that had happened to him after fleeing Pakistan.
– He had with him all important documents and the police said they didn't care that he had lost his asylum in Spain. Imran was very happy that he was permitted to move around freely in Oslo,Dispatch's source reports.
Imran Firasat and our source were in contact until last Wednesday when Imran suddenly stopped answering his mail.
– As far as I understand, says our source, Spain has not so far asked for Imran to be extradited. The question is if they really want him back in order to send him to a certain death in Pakistan.
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