The defense attorney for Mullah Krekar, the former refugee who’s long been declared a threat to Norway’s national security, is now demanding a full appeals court review of Krekar’s pending extradition to Italy. He’s upset over reports that a top Norwegian politician met with his Italian counterpart 18 months before Italy called for Krekar’s extradition over alleged terrorist activities.
Norwegian governments have been trying to deport Krekar for years, but have been unable to send him home to Iraq for fears he’d be executed. When Italy suddenly demanded that Krekar stand trial in Rome on terrorism charges, it looked like Norway would finally be able to send Krekar out of the country.
Attorney Brynjar Meling is raising questions, however, about a meeting between Norwegian and Italian officials that was reported by state broadcaster NRK on Wednesday. The meeting came to light in classified archive material to which NRK gained access.
A city court in Oslo determined in June that there were grounds for Krekar’s extradition, and Krekar, who apparently wants to stay in Norway despite constantly criticizing the country and even threatening the current prime minister, immediately appealed. Now Meling wants the appeals court to thoroughly evaluate the case and the circumstances leading to Italy’s extradition request.
“We’re preparing for the appeals case now,” Meling told NRK. “What NRK has revealed shows a need for full oral arguments.” Justice Minister Anders Anundsen has declined to answer questions about the meeting between his state secretary and Italian officials, citing the pending court case.