The Netherlands temporarily suspends the reception of asylum seekers from Turkey: Ministry of Justice and Security

ANKARA

The Netherlands has decided to suspend the reception of asylum seekers from Turkey despite an EU-Türkiye agreement.

The Netherlands “will not admit any more people under the EU-Turkey statement until the end of 2023”, the Justice and Security Ministry said on Friday.

The Netherlands has admitted “a relatively large number of Syrians” since 2016 under the EU-Türkiye readmission agreement, he said.

The agreement signed in March 2016 stipulates that Ankara is supposed to readmit all irregular asylum seekers who reach the Greek islands from Turkey. In exchange, the European Union agreed to resettle Syrian refugees from Türkiye.

The Dutch government continues to consider “these agreements as important and will also start implementing them again from 2024. But in the current situation, this is irresponsible”, he added.

“A set of solid measures should improve our reception of asylum seekers and the situation in Ter Apel as soon as possible. With the support of the region, we are taking the necessary measures to manage asylum procedures in a humane and dignified way. “said the Secretary of State for Justice. and Safety Eric van der Burg wrote on Twitter.

– Housing crisis

The Cabinet has decided to take action to ease the reception of asylum seekers amid the situation at the Ter Apel asylum center which has lasted for months and turned into a national crisis.

As the Dutch government attempted to resolve the issue, the Dutch Red Cross set up tents in the centre’s garden due to the lack of beds, but removed them following backlash.

Despite the removal of the tents, many refugees, including women, children and the elderly, continued to sleep in the garden.

The government is struggling to find places for asylum seekers due to the lack of space in asylum centers and the inability of municipalities to provide shelter to refugees.

As the government tried to facilitate the transfer of a hotel bought in the village of Albergen to the Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers to accommodate 300 refugees, it faced protests from locals.

Additionally, Van der Burg had offered to turn the cruisers into temporary accommodation centers to help solve the problem.

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Elna M. Lemons