The EU asylum system has failed – Austria — RT Mundo

The EU asylum system has failed – Austria

Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer declared on Monday that the European Union’s asylum system has failed, after his country registered a record 56,000 refugee applications this year. Together with Hungary’s Viktor Orban and Serbia’s Aleksandar Vucic, Nehammer proposed tightening border security.

“Austria is currently very burdened by illegal immigration. The solidarity contribution that we are making in Europe is disproportionately high”, Nehammer testified at a summit with Orban and Vucic in Budapest, according to the Austrian daily Kronen Zeitung.

“Asylum policy has failed. There is still no strong protection of the EU’s external borders, and the reality of the problem is being ignored.” added the chancellor.

Under the EU’s ‘Effective Solidarity’ program, wealthier member states are encouraged to accept immigrants shunned by other nations struggling to manage the influx. If these rich countries refuse, other members are asked to take what the European Commission considers “his fair share” of the migrants.

Some 56,149 asylum applications were filed in Austria between January and August this year, according to the country’s interior ministry. This represents an increase of 195% over the same period last year. The ministry noted that most of the applications were made by Indian nationals, who have no chance of being granted asylum because they arrived from a safe country.

Pakistanis, Moroccans and Tunisians are also among those seeking asylum, and their cases are likely to be rejected.

“As long as the EU does not intervene with efficient measures, we will have to help ourselves” Nehammer said Monday. “Austria is therefore doing everything to protect itself and we want to take further action together with Serbia and Hungary. Because if the Serbian and Hungarian borders are protected, our own border is also protected.”

Austria has used its military to enforce border controls several times since millions of migrants began pouring into Europe in 2015, last year deploying an additional 400 soldiers to its border with Hungary. Orban took an even tougher stance, building a double-layered fence along his borders with Croatia and Serbia, while immediately expelling immigrants deemed inadmissible. Belgrade rejects most asylum applications.

Melissa Galbraith
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