Why can’t we do this? Austria’s asylum numbers drop suddenly | political

From: Zara Riffler, Jan W. Schäfer

Will Austria control the migration crisis?

In 2023, 12,872 people in Austria applied for asylum for the first time (January–April). Mainly there are people from Syria, Afghanistan and Morocco. That is an 18 percent decrease over the previous year.

This emerges from the Austrian Federal Ministry of Interior’s new asylum statistics for April 2023.

Much less than in Germany!

► 57,180 first-time asylum applications were received in Germany – an increase of 78 percent over the same period last year. Illegal migration is also on the rise. 19,627 unusual entries were identified by federal police in just three months.

Why has the number of asylums decreased in Austria – and increased in Germany?

That is why Austria is controlling the migration crisis

By 2022, the number of asylum applications in Austria will triple (108,490) – the neighboring country has the largest increase in asylum cases in the EU.

To prevent this from happening again in 2023, Austria has taken decisive action:

► Austria exercises border control with Hungary and Slovenia. Particular focus is placed on tractor vehicles.

It is very effective: Because there, federal police officers can reject illegal migrants outright (eg if an application for asylum has been refused – or an application has been filed in another member state). It is also an automatic deterrent.

► Austria exercises so-called border control with respect to Italy and Slovakia. There, the Federal Police can carry out checks up to 15-30 kilometers after the border.

Method: Increased police surveillance in border areas through hunting.

Kittsee (border from Austria to Slovakia) in September 2022: Austrian federal police officers inspecting vehicles. Since February 2023, border controls have been replaced by border area controls.

Photo: alliance image / ASSOCIATED PRESS

► In addition, Austria is already fighting people smuggling abroad! Austrian police officers were deployed in Serbia, Montenegro and Hungary.

Neighboring countries benefit from international cooperation with Serbia. As visa-free entry from India and Tunisia to Serbia has been discontinued, flights on Balkan routes (via the Balkans and Hungary to Austria) have decreased.

The head of the Federal Police Union (DPolG), Heiko Teggatz (50), explained in BILD that the decline in migration is directly related to border control.

“From an Austrian perspective, the extension of border controls from Austria to Slovenia and Hungary appears to be working. The reduction in the number of people migrating to Austria supports the Austrian strategy,” said Teggatz.

Austria rushes into asylum procedure

In the case of asylum applications, fast and expedited procedures are used. In concrete terms, this means there is a quick initial check to determine if there is a need for protection.

► Clear successful size: According to the latest asylum statistics from the Ministry of Home Affairs, 8,141 people received positive decisions (asylum or residency) at the end of April, and 24,337 negative decisions (refusals).

A total of 3,049 applications have been rejected in urgent procedures. AND: 14,297 people avoided the procedure and even left Austria alone!

Ambrose Fernandez

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