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efms Migration Report


August 1997

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Laender offer incentives to Bosnian returnees

Niedersachsen, Bayern, Sachsen-Anhalt and Nordrhein-Westfalen have announced that they will encourage voluntary return by offering financial incentives. Niedersachsen has increased its support by ten million marks. According to the Land government, assistance for adults will be raised from 550 to 1,000 DM and children will receive 500 marks (previously 250). Nordrhein-Westfalen is granting a bonus of 150 marks per person upon return. Sachsen-Anhalt provides additional assistance of 1,350 marks to families or 450 marks to individuals. Bosnian refugees residing in Bavaria are to receive additional funds of up to 1,480 marks per person, if they return to their native country by the end of September.
FR 6.8.97 // NZ 29.8.97 // dpa 31.8.97 // SZ 5.19.97


CDU politicians demand more rapid deportation of foreign criminals

The deputy chairman of the CDU/CSU Bundestag group, Rupert Scholz, spoke out in favor of deporting foreign offenders who have been sentenced to one year imprisonment. At the beginning of June 1997 the Bundestag had approved an amendment to the Aliens Law which requires that foreigners sentenced to three years" imprisonment should be immediately deported. In Scholz"s view, it should also be considered whether or not a six-month sentence might suffice as grounds for "optional deportation".
FAZ 6.8.97 // SZ 6.8.97


Waigel considers aliens partly responsible for high rate of unemployment

The Federal Finance Minister, Theo Waigel, demands more consistent treatment of illegal immigrants and rejected asylum seekers whereby deportation should be the rule and not the exception. In his opinion, foreign workers play a role in the high rate of unemployment. Waigel calls it grotesque that millions of Germans are unemployed, while many foreigners have employment. Furthermore, Waigel advocates limiting immigration because of the negative effect of the large numbers of asylum seekers, refugees and Aussiedler (ethnic German immigrants) on the labor market.
International Herald Tribune 15.8.97 // FAZ 15.8.97 // FR 15.8.97


Kanther calls for "unequivocal legal responses" to foreign criminality

In a debate on interior security, Federal Interior Minister Manfred Kanther warned about underestimating the participation of foreigners in organized criminality. On the contrary, Kanther feels it is high time to make use of the straightforward solution to foreigner criminality provided by the reformed Aliens Law of June 1997 which facilitates deportation.
FAZ 20.8.97


Development aid to be linked with cooperation in deportation measures

Finance Minister Theo Waigel, Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel, Developing Aid Minister Dieter Spranger, Niedersachsen Prime Minister Gerhard Schröder, General Secretary of the FDP Guido Westerwelle and the Federal Government Commissioner for Foreigners Cornelia Schmalz-Jacobsen, have spoken out in favor of granting development aid under the condition that recipient countries cooperate in admitting deported refugees and asylum seekers. Schröder said it was often difficult to determine the country of origin as the people concerned destroy their identity cards and refuse to disclose their identities. Spranger argued that if a country is not willing to cooperate in identifying and admitting its citizens, this should have an effect on the relations between the countries.
FR 15.8.97 // FR 18.8.97 // taz 22.8.97 // Welt 22.8.97 // FAZ 22.8.97 // FR 22.8.97 // dpa 1.9.97


High Administrative Court: material benefits for asylum seekers legitimate

The High Administrative Court of Berlin confirmed on Friday the lawfulness of awarding material benefits to asylum seekers at special shops created for this purpose. In their conclusions, the judges explained that the aim of the new asylum-seeker benefits law was "not to give foreigners an incentive to enter or reside in Germany out of economic considerations". For this reason, no fault could be found with the practice of sending foreigners to state warehouses instead of giving them cash or coupons to be redeemed at the shops of their choice.
FR 23.8.97


Hamburg seeks "safe-third-country solution" for deportations

In a proposal submitted to the Bundesrat for resolution, Hamburg seeks to expedite the deportation of foreign offenders. The city state urges that an international regulation be determined for deporting foreign offenders whose country of origin cannot be determined beyond all doubt. The "safe-third-country solution" is being discussed, according to which a black African country would be obliged to admit all black Africans, regardless of their papers.
dpa 26.8.97 // dpa 27.8.97 // SZ 28.8.97 // dpa 2.9.97


New obstacles for foreign students

Federal Minister Manfred Kanther is planning to supplement the Aliens Law with new administrative requirements which will make it more difficult for foreigners to study in Germany. The residence duration of foreign students would be limited to ten years and residence permits would be limited to one year instead of two years as is now the norm in most Länder. Furthermore, residence permits would be approved only if the time limit for studies had not been exceeded by more than three semesters. A change in the area of study would be possible only in the first three semesters. Moreover, foreign students would be allowed to work only in the semester breaks or as temporary staff within the university. Kanther"s plan has met with vehement criticism by opposition parties as well as financial circles. His critics accuse Kanther of aiming to make Germany an even less attractive place for foreigners to study.
dpa 28.8.97 // FR 29.8.97 // taz 29.8.97 // FR 30.8.97


4,358 asylum seekers in airport proceedings

In 1996 4,358 asylum seekers who had entered Germany by plane were subjected to so-called airport proceedings. Among these, 290 were unaccompanied minors. This information was provided by the federal government in response to an inquiry by the PDS. The data refer to the airports of Frankfurt am Main, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Berlin-Schönefeld and München. For the duration of these proceedings asylum seekers are housed in the transit area of the airports.
FAZ 23.8.97


More than 2,600 deportations to Vietnam

From the signing of the German-Vietnamese Repatriation Agreement in 1995 until the beginning of July 1997, 2,623 Vietnamese were deported to their country of origin. This was announced by the federal government in response to an inquiry by Bündnis 90/Die Grünen (Alliance 90/The Green Party). By the end of May, 743 Vietnamese had returned voluntarily. The federal government has applied to the Vietnamese authorities to admit some 17,000 persons.
dpa 6.8.97


65,000 Bosnian refugees return to their native country

More than a fifth of the Bosnian war refugees had returned to their native country by the end of July 1997. This was reported by the domestic authorities of the Länder in response to a survey conducted by the news agency Reuter. Of the 323,000 Bosnians who had come to Germany since 1992, 65,000 have already returned voluntarily. 408 Bosnians have been deported so far.
FR 13.8.97 // SZ 13.8.97 // FAZ 16.8.97 // NZ 16.8.97


Increase in xenophobic and antisemitic violations

According to data released by the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BKA) the number of xenophobic and antisemitic offences continues to rise. The BKA registered 189 xenophobic violations in Juni. In May and April, the numbers were respectively 175 and 159. Furthermore, there were 216 antisemitic offences commited in the second quarter of this year. In the first quarter, 198 antisemitic violations were registered.
taz 21.8.97 // taz 22.8.97


Aussiedler statistics

In August, the number of Aussiedler (ethnic German immigrants from Eastern Europe) fell to its lowest point since 1987. According to data provided by the Federal Interior Ministry, 10,671 Aussiedler were registered; in August of the previous year, there had been 14,633. In the first eight months of 1997 94,159 Aussiedler came, or roughly 20,000 fewer than in the same period of 1996. The Commissioner for Aussiedler, Horst Waffenschmidt said that this year, for the first time since 1987, fewer than 150,000 Aussiedler would come to Germany.
SZ 2.9.97 // taz 2.9.97


Asylum statistics

In August, 8,536 persons applied for asylum in Germany. According to the Federal Ministry of the Interior, this is approximately 300 fewer than in the previous month, and compared to August 1996 this is a reduction of about 1,000 petitions. The number of asylum seekers from Irak continues to rise whereas the number of applicants from Turkey has fallen. The main countries of origin were Irak, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Turkey. In August, the Federal Bureau for the Recognition of Foreign Refugees ruled on 12,350 applications. The rate of approval was four percent.
BMI Press Announcement 4.9.97 // dpa 4.9.97 // FAZ 5.9.97

August 1997

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