The authorities will not release underage illegal immigrants from Harku Detention Center despite Tallinn Administrative Court issuing a decree saying "long-term imprisonment affects children's well-being and mental health.”
The said decree, which also states that the court is not convinced that all the developmental needs of the children staying at the center are met, was issued in connection to an Iraqi family detained there for one and a half months, Eesti Ekspress reported.
Although the children in question, a 7-year-old boy and a 3-year-old, were moved to an open accomodation center with their mother as soon as the ruling was made, eight more children, including a baby born in September, remain in the closed detention center until further notice.
While most people who are seeking asylum in Estonia are housed at Vao accommodation center, illegal immigrants whose applications have proved problematic, who refuse to apply for asylum in Estonia, or who are waiting to be deported, are detained in the closed facility in Harku. For example, an Iraqi family that refused to apply for asylum was deported back to their home country last month.
Editor: M. Oll