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Confederation must “move significantly”

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Confederation must “move significantly”
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Stephan Weil (SPD), Prime Minister of Lower Saxony. © Fernando Martinez/dpa

States and municipalities want more money from the federal government at the refugee summit. Lower Saxony’s Prime Minister Weil makes it clear that the federal government shares responsibility. He is skeptical about the outcome of the talks.

Hanover – Before the refugee summit planned for next Wednesday, Lower Saxony’s Prime Minister Stephan Weil emphasized the joint responsibility of the federal government. The federal government must “move considerably” on the question of financial responsibility, said the SPD politician on Sunday in Hanover. The financial contributions of the federal government should be based primarily on how many people come to Germany – “because that’s a number that the federal states and municipalities definitely cannot influence”. An annual flat rate regardless of the number of people seeking protection is not enough.

Weil announced that he was expecting “very difficult talks” on Wednesday: “At the moment it is not foreseeable whether we will actually be able to come to a common position in the end. I wish that very much.” It can only be in the interest of society if politicians show common ground in this situation. “However, I must also say that the federal government’s proposals so far have given little reason for confidence in this regard.”

The Prime Minister also stressed that he expects progress on readmission agreements with countries “of which we know that many of their citizens are in Germany without a right to stay”. The only reason why they cannot be deported is that the countries of origin have so far refused to do so. “We are dependent on the federal government being successful,” he said.

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For 2023, the federal government had pledged 1.5 billion euros for refugees from Ukraine last year, as well as a general refugee-related lump sum of 1.25 billion euros. In addition, the federal government pays social benefits for Ukrainian war refugees and for recognized refugees from other countries who do not earn their own living. dpa

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