POLITICS

Feds add Romania, four others countries to so-called safe countries list

10/10/2014 04:40 EDT | Updated 12/10/2014 05:59 EST
OTTAWA - Refugee claimants from another five countries will find it more difficult to find haven in Canada after the federal government extended its list of so-called safe countries.

Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Romania and San Marino are now considered designated countries of origin, bringing the total number of safe countries on the list to 42.

The designation means the Canadian government considers a country respectful of human rights, able to offer state protection and not normally a source of refugees.

People who do make refugee claims from those designated safe countries are processed more quickly and lose certain avenues of appeal available to other refugee claimants.

The government created the designated country of origin list in 2012 in order to deal with what it said was an influx of questionable refugee claims from safe countries.

But critics have said the list is unfairly prejudicial, noting that many democratic states also have known problems protecting the rights of some minorities.