Interior Minister Gerhard Karner (ÖVP) sharply criticizes a German advance in EU asylum policy. After a meeting with EU Interior Commissioner Ylva Johansson in Berlin last Friday, her counterpart Nancy Faeser said that a “coalition of receptive member states” could go ahead and thus initiate the further development of the European asylum system.
But that would send out “wrong signals”, emphasized Karner in an interview with the German daily newspaper “Bild”. “I speak out clearly against such efforts.” Such an alliance arouses false expectations, the ÖVP politician continues. Instead, Karner pleads for an “alliance of reason”. When it comes to migration, the EU should concentrate on those issues on which there is consensus. These are robust external border protection, fast procedures and consistent returns. The number of illegal smuggles is increasing Austria, which, like Germany, is one of the main destinations for migrants, has been pursuing a restrictive asylum policy for many years. In 2021, according to the Federal Criminal Police Office, 40,000 people who had crossed the national borders illegally and sometimes with the help of smugglers were apprehended in Austria, almost twice as many as in the previous year.