Japan's Revised Immigration Law Sparks Deportation Worries


Tokyo, June 10 (Jiji Press)--Japan's revised immigration control and refugee recognition law, put into full effect Monday, has raised alarms among those facing potential deportation under the new regulations.

Marking a major change in the rules on detention and repatriation of foreigners without resident status, the revised law allows the government to deport individuals who have applied for refugee status three times or more even while their applications are being processed, unless they have a valid reason.

"There will be no guarantee of life if I return," said Myo Kyaw Kyaw, 38, a member of Myanmar's persecuted Rohingya Muslim minority who is seeking refugee status in Japan after fleeing the Southeast Asian country. "It's a law that doesn't protect lives."

He joined the democratization movement in Myanmar after becoming aware of problems with the country's military regime when he was a high school student. He said he literally risked his life on the movement. His family also faced danger.

After arriving in Japan in 2006, he applied for refugee status three times, but all his applications have been rejected. Dissatisfied with the conclusion, he has appealed to an organization related to the Immigration Services Agency of Japan for refugee recognition, but it is uncertain whether he will gain such recognition.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press