The CDU is pressing Scholz: “Finding a solution or the will to help and integrate will fail”
The topic of migrants still animates the debate between Germany and Italy today. Berlin indicates the need for a European solution and reiterates its intention to support the work of NGOs. Within German borders, however, the positions are more complex and the government’s line does not enjoy unanimous support. “We cannot set limits on entries because we have European laws and international law: we cannot reduce the individual’s right to asylum alone”, the words of Nancy Faeser, Minister of the Interior, to the broadcaster ARD. “We are bound by the Geneva Convention on Refugees and the European Convention on Human Rights. The minister has to face pressure from Markus Soeder, Prime Minister of Bavaria: “The Chancellor” Olaf Scholz “has been silent for weeks: he should now work on the issue. He should show his leadership in the circumstance.”
The data: boom in asylum requests
Several German cities have recently expressed concern about the influx of migrants. As of the end of August 2023, the Federal Office for Immigration and Refugees recorded 204,000 asylum requests, an increase of 77% compared to the previous year. Furthermore, due to the war between Ukraine and Russia, more than one million Ukrainian citizens – who are not required to apply for asylum – have sought refuge in German territory.
The pressure of the CDU
There is no intention to question the right to asylum but “we must move towards a sustainable immigration policy”. Friedrich Merz, leader of the CDU, joined the discussion: “We must resolve the situation. If we do not want to abuse the population’s willingness to help and promote integration, we must quickly reduce the number of migrants arriving in Germany.”