World Refugee Day 2022: Afghanistan Reception Program Must No Longer Be Delayed

Next Monday, June 20, is World Refugee Day. Since the United Nations established this day 21 years ago, the number of refugees worldwide has risen from 20 million to 100 million. I have written this press release to mark the occasion:

"Worldwide, more than 100 million people are on the run. As Europeans, we have a responsibility to do our part. The reception of refugees from Ukraine has shown what Europe is capable of if it wants to. After years of asylum policy characterized by isolation and deterrence, the turning point must now also be reached in migration policy.

Unfortunately, state crimes against refugees at the external borders have continued even after the war of aggression on Ukraine began. People are being degraded, mistreated and prevented from applying for asylum in increasingly disgusting ways. This also affects many refugees from Russia, Syria, Afghanistan or opposition members from Turkey.

Federal Ministry of the Interior must implement democratic decisions

After 20 years of military deployment in Afghanistan, Germany has a special responsibility for the threatened people in the country. In the coalition agreement, an admission program was agreed upon, but there seems to be a blockade of officials in the Federal Ministry of the Interior. Some employees there do not yet seem to be aware that the Minister of the Interior no longer comes from the CSU and that it is her task to implement democratic decisions. 

The Federal Ministry of the Interior must finally take an ambitious approach to the admission program for Afghanistan. Taking in 20,000 endangered persons and their closest relatives does not present us with too great a challenge. We are talking about young women who are forcibly married, women's rights defenders, well-known journalists and intellectuals who are being hunted by the Taliban. Our society can be proud if we do not leave it to the Taliban, but lead by example. 

Moreover, state crimes continue to be committed daily at the EU's external borders. The reality at the external borders would have been unimaginable in its cruelty just a few years ago. Unfortunately, the Commission and the Council prefer to look the other way instead of holding the Member States accountable.The Federal Ministry of the Interior has the important mandate from the coalition agreement to end the suffering at our external borders. The everyday violation of the law at our external borders must finally be addressed openly. The federal government continues to have a responsibility not to allow right-wing propaganda to prevail and the suffering at our external borders to become the norm. We need an offensive of the rule of law at the external borders."