Bruls sets cabinet deadline in asylum crisis: ‘Rich is responsible’


NOS NewsMonday, 21:17Amended Monday, 21:53

The responsibility of the security regions in tackling the asylum crisis will end on 1 October. That says Mayor Bruls van Nijmegen, chairman of the Security Council. The security regions are not in a position to solve the crisis in the reception of asylum seekers, according to Bruls.

“It is very special that municipalities are given a lot of responsibility, and therefore also criticism, while that responsibility really lies with the government,” says Bruls.

Bruls says that the municipalities will continue to cooperate in tackling the asylum crisis, but that the problem will continue to exist as long as no structural solutions are provided from The Hague. “The system is failing,” said the chairman of the Security Council. In terms of structural solutions, he is thinking of stopping and sending away hopeless asylum seekers and designating large-scale reception locations.

Asked about the timing of his announcement, Bruls says: “If we wait until the end of September, we will have our backs against the wall again. That is why we are now sending out an early signal. There must be a structural solution before 1 October.”

Tomorrow new meeting

Bruls mentions the situation around the application center for asylum seekers in Ter Apel, where Saturday and Sunday night 250 to 300 people slept outside, “crying to heaven”. “These are images I thought I only saw in France and Hungary.”

These pictures were taken this morning:

Tomorrow morning, there will be another meeting with Van der Burg to find a solution in the short term. It is urgent, because according to Bruls the situation is getting worse by the day.

Third-country nationals from Ukraine

Last week Bruls called on the cabinet to bar so-called safelanders, immigrants who have no chance of asylum status, when entering the Netherlands. According to the government, that is impossible. Safelanders already get priority on other asylum seekers, so that they can be deported as soon as possible.

The Ministry of Justice and Security now says that people who had a temporary residence permit in Ukraine and are now in the Netherlands can no longer claim municipal shelter, living allowance, education and medical care. This concerns, for example, foreigners who studied or worked in Ukraine. Most of them come from safe countries, according to the ministry. “For example, there are known cases of people who first returned to their own country after the war and then traveled to the Netherlands.”

Recently, there has been an increase in the number of ‘third-country nationals’ who came to the Netherlands from other EU countries, because they received less extensive facilities in other countries. By deporting them, the pressure on municipal shelters will be reduced, the ministry hopes. It is not known how many people are involved.

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