By Joseph Kleinrath
Hans Peter Doskozil, the SPÖ governor of Burgenland, caused a stir by demanding a maximum asylum limit of 10,000 applications by 2024. Even for SPÖ leader Andreas Pöbler, this is “not a solution.” Peter Hacker, SPÖ community councilor in Vienna, does not consider the plan to be effective.
On Friday, Toskozil supported the project at ZIB2. Austria is the number 1 destination country in Europe – because the asylum system enables 95 percent of asylum seekers to stay in the country, even though the practice has a negative effect, 90 percent should stay. He also criticized non-compliance with the Dublin Accords. It states that the asylum procedure must be carried out at the point of entry into a European country for the first time.
It covers all asylum seekers after its peak of 10,000. Doskozil demands that the procedures be sent back to where they came from. In the case of Burgenland, “to Hungary, where they come from”.
The Dublin Treaty, which places a heavy burden on countries on the EU's external borders, particularly Italy, Greece, Bulgaria and Hungary, is “perhaps unfair”: “but it is applicable law.” But, this is not practical.
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Toskozil defends going solo again
“We are no longer in control of the situation,” Burgenland's governor never tired of insisting.
What he advocated: Going it alone on the issue. “No, this was not discussed with the federal SPÖ and Andreas Babler,” Doskozil confirmed when asked, and had nothing to do with other federal states: “You have to admit that the Burgenland Social Democrats take an independent position on social. – political issues.” He strongly believes that the upper limit can create pressure to achieve a fairer system in Europe.
A payment card for asylum seekers that has already been approved in Germany was also discussed. The Governor of Upper Austria, Thomas Stelzer (ÖVP), supported his Interior Minister Gerhard Garner's (ÖVP) proposal to reduce Austria's attractiveness as a refugee country. Toskozil is skeptical about this.
“Germany has ten times the cash benefits compared to us, yet we are the No. 1 destination country for asylum seekers in Europe,” he believes, adding that a payment card is an inappropriate tool to make Austria attractive as a destination country. It is critical to continue removing those whose asylum applications have been rejected outside the country. In these cases there should be “no more money, only for repatriation”.