Greener pastures become nightmare for 148 Lankans
All deported, 17 diagnosed with Malaria:
Over 148 Sri Lankan bogus asylum seekers, stranded in Togo after
being duped by human smugglers were deported to the country yesterday,
with the assistance of Canadian and Sri Lankan authorities and the
International Organisation for Migration.
They had sought asylum in Canada but had been sent to Togo instead.
A group of 200 Sri Lankans had been taken from Colombo to Mumbai and
then to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and from there to Lome by air on a visit
visa, where they were holed up in five houses after being assured they
would be taken to Ghana and from there by boat to Canada.
They were detained in a camp in the country’s capital and deported to
Sri Lanka in groups.
Acording to Foreign Ministry Additional Secretary Sarath Dissanayake,
this is the last group of Sri Lankans stranded in Togo numbering 148.
The human smugglers obtained over Rs 500,000 from each promising
greener pastures in Canada. Meanwhile, Airport Health authorities
yesterday said all deportees were screened, and 17 were diagnosed with
Malaria. The Malaria patients were admitted to the Infectious Disease
Hospital, Health Ministry sources said.