Latvia conveys lack of comprehension concerning Denmark’s objectives in extraditing Latvian citizen to a third country

  • 2020-02-10
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - On 10 February 2020, the Ambassador of Denmark, Flemming Stender, was summoned to a meeting with the State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Andris Pelss, to receive an official demarche concerning the planned extradition of the Latvian citizen, Kristine Misane, to the Republic of South Africa, LETA learned from the ministry. 

Latvia has repeatedly requested that this citizen of Latvia not be extradited before all legal procedures have been completed. "We urge Danish authorities to await the session of the Danish district court scheduled to be held this coming Friday, February 14," the ministry said in its statement.

Latvia would like to convey its lack of comprehension concerning Denmark’s objectives in extraditing a citizen of the European Union to a third country where human rights violations have been noted on an international scale. This extradition is especially difficult to understand given Latvia’s repeated communications with Denmark requesting that Misane not be extradited, with these communications taking place both through diplomatic channels, as well as on the political level. At the current time, taking into account that Misane has begun a hunger strike, we call upon Denmark to pay particular attention to the condition of her health, so as to avoid a serious deterioration, the ministry said.

"We call on Denmark to act in accordance with the high human rights standards that are of equal importance to both Latvia and Denmark," the ministry said in its statement.

As reported, Misane met a citizen of the South Africa in 2011 and they had a daughter four years later. However, conflicts began between the two parents, which were initially financially motivated. The man then unilaterally decided to end the relationship and began to abuse both Misane and the two minors in the family.

Fearing for the safety and lives of herself and her children, in Misane returned to Latvia in May 2018. In December 2018, Misane went on a business trip through Copenhagen to Mozambique, but was detained while crossing the border because she was wanted by Interpol. South Africa had told Interpol that Misane was wanted for kidnapping a minor. Now the women is facing a fifteen-year prison sentence in South Africa.

Denmark plans to extradite Latvian mother Kristine Misane to South Africa on February 12, or two days before the Danish District Court is expected to decide on possibly releasing the woman due to already having served her sentence.

According to Misane's representatives, the Danish prosecutor's office is currently "trying, by any means possible, to extradite Misane South Africa". With this in mind, Misane has started a hunger strike at her place of detention. Its purpose is to draw attention to the rights of European Union citizens, which prohibits extradition to third countries.

According to Misane's spokespersons, extradition 48 hours before the hearing is "a slap in the face for both Misane and Latvia, showing that, according to the Danish Attorney General's Office, the people of Latvia are not EU citizens whose rights must too be protected".