Lazy eyes listen
Chancellor Olaf Scholz has announced that Germany will tighten its immigration laws and may begin processing asylum seekers in third countries outside the European Union. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni announced earlier this week that Rome plans to construct such a facility in Albania.
Chancellor Scholz, who emerged from marathon nine-hour talks with regional leaders into the early hours of Tuesday, hailed the agreed-upon measures as a “historic moment.” The restriction of “irregular migration” was named as his cabinet’s goal. He also promised that the federal government would assist regional authorities in receiving immigrants.
Those who have been denied the right to remain in Germany, particularly offenders and criminals, will be deported back to their home countries more quickly, according to Scholz.
According to the chancellor, all court processes for asylum eligibility will now take no longer than six months. To speed matters up, the government will also introduce more digital solutions. The plan also calls for a reduction of cash payments to registered arrivals and a longer wait before they can access full welfare allowances, increasing from 18 months to 36.
Furthermore, asylum seekers who have a good chance of being granted refugee status will be integrated into the country’s labour market more quickly, with the government allocating more resources for professional and language courses.
The chancellor also stated that his government would investigate the possibility of processing asylum applications in third countries outside of Europe. Meanwhile, German authorities will continue to monitor the country’s borders with Poland, the Czech Republic, Austria, and Switzerland to prevent illegal migrants from entering.
Scholz also announced a decision to limit the right to family reunification for individuals who do not qualify as refugees but still have subsidiary protection status.
According to Berlin data, the number of applicants for residency increased by approximately 73% between January and September of this year compared to the same period last year. This figure, however, does not include the over one million Ukrainian refugees who have arrived in Germany since February 2022.
On Monday, Italian Prime Minister Meloni announced that her government had reached an agreement with Albania to establish a processing centre there, which will handle up to 36,000 applicants per year.
The news infuriated humanitarian and human-rights organisations, with the International Rescue Committee calling the agreement “dehumanising.”
The arrangement has also ruffled a few feathers in Brussels, according to the Guardian, citing EU officials.