Germany To Start Kicking Out Migrants, Only If They Are From Afghanistan
In a major change of policy, Germany is to start deporting Afghan asylum-seekers as it struggles to bring the refugee crisis under control, according to German media.
Angela Merkel’s government is concerned at reports that hundreds of thousands of Afghans may be on their way to Europe, and wants to send a strong signal to discourage them, German press reports.
The news comes less than two weeks after Germany announced it had put plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan on hold because of the deteriorating security situation there.
So far this year, 124,000 Afghans requested asylum in Europe, according to the UN refugee agency – more than twice as many as in the same period last year.
Afghans are the second-largest group of asylum-seekers in Germany after Syrians, and the fastest growing. One in four asylum-seekers on the West Balkan route across Europe are believed to be Afghans.
But Mrs Merkel’s government believes as many as half of those flocking to Europe are not genuine refugees, but come for economic reasons.
Germany will continue to offer asylum to those fleeing areas held by the Taliban or affected by fighting. But it wants to repatriate those who come from areas considered “safe”, like the capital, Kabul.
Unlike in Syria, large parts of Afghanistan that are under government control are considered relatively stable by Western governments.