Council in Sweden urges action to hinder wife importers
The governor of Värmland, western Sweden, has called for action to track the marital lives of men that habitually wed foreign women after it is revealed the region has the highest number of so-called wife importers in the country.
“We are asking for a specific commission from the government to find measures to reduce the number of these wife importers,” said county governor Eva Eriksson to news agency TT.
The present problem is the lack of accessible knowledge about the men who repeatedly tie the knot with women from abroad.
It is believed the men are abusing a Swedish Migration Board (Migrationsverket) rule, which states that a foreign wife can be deported if the marriage ends within two years.
The National Organisation for Women’s and Girls’ Shelters in Sweden (Roks) has surveyed how many women coming to Sweden to marry end up seeking help through their women’s centres.
In 2008, 38 out of 515 women who needed assistance were living in Värmland where the situation is significantly worse than in Sweden’s big cities.
By way of comparison, there is one case per 7,000 inhabitants in Värmland and one case per 19,000 residents in Stockholm.
“We could obtain information about which men are exploiting the system from the migration authorities but at present those records are confidential and protected by law,” said Angela Beausang, chairwoman of Roks.
“In order to help the women from winding up in the clutches of these men, we would like the element of confidentiality to be removed,” she added.