Sunday, January 16, 2022

Years of standstill – Interior Minister Faeser wants to change EU asylum policy

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The asylum policy of the European Union has been bogged down for years. The new interior minister now wants to change that: together with other countries, she now wants to lead the way – even if not everyone wants to participate.

In order to end the blockade in EU asylum policy that has been going on for years, Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser wants to forge a “coalition of receptive member states”. Such a coalition could go ahead and thus get the further development of the European asylum system going, said the SPD politician on Friday after a meeting with EU Interior Commissioner Ylva Johansson in Berlin.

Her first talks with France and Italy on migration issues had been promising. The minister did not dare to estimate how large this “coalition of the willing” would ultimately be. The new federal government also stands for “a new spirit” in migration policy, which also applies to Europe.

The migration crisis on the border with Belarus has shown that the EU states can be successful if they act together, said EU Commissioner Johansson. Around 5,000 of the migrants who were “lured into a trap” by the Belarusian ruler Alexander Lukashenko have now returned to their countries of origin. Recently, hardly any migrants have come to the European Union irregularly, she emphasized.

It is good that Germany is “taking on a more constructive role again when it comes to the deadlocked negotiations on the reform of the European asylum system,” said the Greens’ chairman in the interior committee, Marcel Emmerich. Faeser’s predecessor Horst Seehofer (CSU) had “blocked or blindly ignored” humanitarian approaches for years.

With a group of EU member states, Germany can now bring more movement into the negotiations and ensure better standards.

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