German Minister of the Interior Thomas de Maiziere has said that he does not rule out the possibility of returning refugees to Slovenia and Croatia because in the two EU countries, unlike Greece and Hungary, conditions for refugees are not inhumane.
“Since Greece is not treating refugees well, we have been forbidden by courts to apply the Dublin procedure to that country. There are similar rulings for Hungary as well. As for Croatia and Slovenia, the situation is different. Therefore we have to see whether there is a possibility of a more massive return of refugees to those countries,” De Maiziere said in an interview with the Stuttgarter Nachrichten daily of Monday.
He explained in the interview why the so-called Dublin procedure, under which refugees must be kept in those member-countries where they first step on EU soil, is not currently functioning.
Several German courts earlier made rulings banning the return of asylum-seekers to countries like Greece because of inhumane conditions there.
De Maiziere also commented on an increasing number of cases of unacceptable behaviour on the part of refugees such as refusing accommodation allocated to them by the authorities.
“Until this summer, refugees were grateful and friendly towards the authorities; they registered in an orderly manner and were accommodated throughout the country. However, for some time now we have been noticing that many of them do not accept that. They are not willing to register and are going to where they believe they should be. It does not work like that any more. It is not good in any sense of the word. There is no right for refugees to choose where they will be accommodated,” said the German minister.
He underlined that the authorities would do their best to deport as soon as possible those who have no prospect of staying in Germany. In that context he singled out nationals of Western Balkan countries, primarily Albanians, as well as Afghans who have been arriving in Germany lately.
“We have to make young people from Afghanistan understand that they are needed to build their country. Many come from safe parts of the country such as Kabul. We have to tell them: You cannot be granted asylum just because you don’t like the situation in your country. That is why we will thoroughly check each asylum application by Afghan nationals,” said De Maiziere.
He admitted that the latest situation with refugees was grist to the mill of right-wing populists, but also expressed confidence that trust in the political system and political parties was strong enough for the society to resist populist challenges. (Hina)