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MURMANSK, October 15. /TASS/. The flow of Syrian refugees reaching Norway from Russia’s northern Murmansk region has grown threefold in October, a spokesman for the Federal Security Service border department in Karelia republic told TASS on Thursday.
In September, 293 refugees reached Norway through the Borisoglebsky border crossing point while more than 210 passed through in the first 10 days of October alone, Denis Rozolinsky said. The flow was not thinning, he said.
"In summer, slightly more than 100 refugees were crossing the border monthly," he said, noting that there had been no expulsions from Norway so far.
On Wednesday, Norwegian Minister of Justice and Public Security Anders Anundsen told reporters that asylum-seekers having legal grounds for a long-term stay in Russia would be promptly returned to Russia and that their applications would not be reviewed.
The minister did not rule out that some groups could be bringing Syrians to Norway via Russia in an organized manner. He said Norway was noting a sharply growing influx coming from Russia while Finland — also bordering on Russia — was not facing the same situation.
Syrians arrive in Murmansk mainly from Moscow. Irina Neverova, head of Murmansk region’s Pechenga district bordering on Norway, said the population of Syrians living locally reached about 300. They lived first at private apartments and hotels in local settlements then crossed the border as asylum-seekers, she said.