The Interior Ministry has so far set up 25 tents in two states (Carinthia and Upper Austria) to deal with the refugee housing crisis, but this could only be the beginning. According to Interior Minister Gerhard Karner, other states could soon follow. The situation is “dynamic and dramatic in some places,” the ÖVP politician said on Tuesday.
“It may well be the case in other states as well,” Karner replied on Tuesday when asked what the plan for Tyrol and Vorarlberg looked like, referring to the Federal Agency for Care and Support Services (BBU), which is coordinating accurate planning with the federal states.
“Loitering of Refugees”
According to Karner, the tents will be set up on properties belonging to the Ministry of the Interior, for example at the headquarters of the state police, to prevent asylum seekers from staying in front of schools, for example. In the “Krone” interview, Karner described setting up tents as a measure against “refugee loitering”.
Greek minister in Vienna
People who have little chance of asylum, such as those from India, Morocco and Tunisia, will be accommodated there, Karner said after a working meeting with the Greek minister of migration, Notis Mitarakis, at the interior ministry in Vienna.
Asylum statistics: peak for refugees in basic care
In September, the number of refugees receiving basic care reached an all-time high. With 89,520 people, that was already significantly more than in the years of the refugee crisis in 2016 and 2017 – almost 80,000 people were received, according to the asylum statistics from the Ministry of the Interior.
At the beginning of September, 82,965 of the people in basic care were taken care of by the federal states. According to the database of basic services, 6550 were in the care of the federal government.
Karner sees Austria “at the limit of resilience and in some cases above the limit of resilience” with regard to the admission of refugees. The BBU is “intensively” working on the exact plan to “be prepared for the eventualities we have to work through”.
Tightening visa rules in Serbia
Current detentions, transit and asylum applications are taken into account. The current particular momentum is driven by the prospect of tightening visa rules in Serbia towards the end of the year, which will intensify the activities of the “smuggling mafia”, and by the elections in Turkey in the spring.
SPÖ criticizes setting up the tents
Criticism came from the SPÖ. Setting up tents for asylum seekers is a manifestation of the failure of the Interior Ministry and the Turquoise Green government, said security spokesman Reinhold Einwallner. Instead of talking to the federal states in time and working out solutions, the ÖVP is playing a “treacherous game with symbolic politics at the back of the population and the fleeing people”.
FPÖ NÖ calls for Karner .’s resignation
The FPÖ Lower Austria even called on Tuesday for Karner’s resignation and an immediate asylum freeze.
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