26/11/2010 19:33:24
Cameroonian student detained in Siberia
A Cameroon national studying in a Siberian university was detained near the Russian-Norwegian border when he attempted to cross it illegally, Alexander Charygin, a spokesman for the local police, said on Friday.
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"It's very difficult to understand the Cameroonian, his Russian is poor. He allegedly heard somewhere of a visa-free border regime [between Russia and Europe], but did not understand that this is a thing for the future," Charygin said.

Moussangou Babi Tshibouaboua was arrested in the Russian settlement of Nikel, several kilometers from the Russian border with Norway. He has an expired Russian visa and no Schengen visa in his passport. The student wanted to visit his brother who lives in Norway and does not understand why he was arrested.

The Cameroonian was sent to a detention center in Murmansk and is currently waiting for deportation to his native country. However, he could be stranded in Murmansk for a while. Russian authorities have sent a letter to the Cameroon Embassy in Moscow; however, they may not respond to the request.

"The problem is that they [officials from Cameroon] may not respond to our request at all. Once, we were unable to send a Tajik back home for several months due to the country's red tape in the embassy," Charygin said.

Charygin said the student had no reasons to complain.

"The conditions in the center are normal, there is a TV set, it is warm and there is plenty of food. He has good company, a Kazakh and Ukrainian, who are also waiting to be deported," Charygin said.

Russia submitted a draft agreement on scrapping the visa regime to the EU at the Russia-EU summit in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don on May 31, 2010, however the issue is still undecided. Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov rebuked the EU in September for dragging its heels on the issue, saying that Russia wanted a "clear answer."

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