The head of Norway’s security policy has warned that many asylum-seekers who are granted refuge in the country are under threat by their country’s secret service. “We do not know the scope of this due to the high volume of unreported numbers. However, we experience that the scope of refugee espionage has increased along with the number of refugees that come to Norway,” Trond Hugubakken was quoted as saying in an interview with Oslo’s daily Vårt Land.
According to the newspaper report, officials in Norway say they are monitoring the situation and investigating reports of refugees who are being kept under surveillance in Norway by agents from their home countries.
Short of naming specific countries, the report said certain states involved in refugee espionage have recently tightened the rules for freedom of speech in their own country. The goal of these states is to silence the critics of authoritarian regimes.
In a recent interview with the Norway Post, Mahmood Amiry-Moghaddam, a Norwegian-Iranian human rights activist and the head of the Oslo-based organisation Iran Human Rights, said:
“We have several examples of Iran’s secret services approaching family members of refugees who have criticised the regime here in Norway.”