“Traffic light ducks away”: Municipalities complain to Merz about their suffering with immigration


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“Traffic Light Ducks Away”
Municipalities complain to Merz about their suffering with immigration

If the chancellor doesn’t do it, the opposition will: The Union will receive 200 mayors and district administrators who feel left alone by the federal government when it comes to asylum policy. If things continue like this, the willingness to help of the citizens is in danger, says CDU leader Merz.

Union faction leader Friedrich Merz wants to work with the federal government to help the municipalities to accommodate migrants. “We want to have solutions here so that the willingness to help is maintained in this country,” said the CDU chairman in Berlin at a municipal summit of the Union faction with a good 200 mayors and district administrators on asylum and refugee policy. The federal government has twice invited to a refugee summit, but the results for the municipalities are “unchanged very unsatisfactory and insufficient”.

In a discussion, mayors and district administrators reported on partly inhumane accommodation situations for migrants – among other things because many people stayed in Germany who actually had to leave the country. A district administrator accused the federal government of ducking away from the problems, one felt left alone. Initial accommodation facilities are overcrowded because the housing market is busy. Several speakers called for stronger initiatives to build housing for migrants.

One million war refugees and 300,000 asylum applications

Merz said Germany took in more than a million war refugees from Ukraine in 2022. This is a great sign of helpfulness. In addition, there were 244,000 asylum applications, of which 220,000 were first-time applications. In January and February 2023 alone, almost 59,000 new asylum applications were made. Calculated over the year, well over 300,000 asylum applications must be expected.

Such a large number of refugees and also of asylum seekers will bring Germany “to the limits of what society is still willing to accept,” warned Merz. Many people said that more is not possible anymore. The Union therefore wants to find new solutions. The parliamentary group leader announced an initiative in the Bundestag to make a contribution to crisis management together with the federal government.

CSU regional group leader Alexander Dobrindt accused the federal government of ignorant and unacceptable behavior towards the municipalities. For example, only four of 24 letters from municipal representatives to the Chancellery were answered. Among other things, new return options would have to be created in cooperation with third countries. “Anyone who wants to work with us must also be willing to take their compatriots back if they don’t have the right to stay in Germany.” At EU level, it is about protecting the external borders. More skills and equipment are needed for the EU border protection agency Frontex.

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