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Kretschmer supports reduction in benefits for asylum seekers

Michael Kretschmer (CDU), Minister President of Saxony / Photo: Robert Michael/dpa
Michael Kretschmer (CDU), Minister President of Saxony / Photo: Robert Michael/dpa

Saxony's Prime Minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) supports the proposal by FDP federal ministers to cut social benefits for asylum seekers. "We know that social standards are also a major reason for illegal migration to Germany," Kretschmer said Saturday. "These are the wrong rules for a country of immigration." He said he expects the chancellor to present proposals for implementation at the conference of state premiers in November. He said solutions were needed that minimized the incentive to migrate to Germany.

Finance Minister Christian Lindner and Justice Minister Marco Buschmann (both FDP) have called for cuts in benefits. "Under very narrow conditions, even a reduction of benefits virtually to "zero" would be conceivable," they wrote in a guest article in the "Welt am Sonntag." They suggest this for people "who are entitled to humanitarian protection in the EU state responsible for them under the Dublin rules, but who refuse to claim protection there. In these cases, it would be conceivable to lower the benefit to the reimbursement of necessary travel expenses to the responsible state."

Furthermore, the federal ministers criticize the level of basic benefits for asylum seekers in initial reception facilities. They are also in favor of electronic payment cards for asylum seekers.

Kretschmer accused Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) of ignoring proposals from the state premiers and the opposition for weeks. "The chancellor just has to accept the outstretched hand." The FDP ministers' proposals would underscore the demands of the state premiers, he said. "The social standards in this country are too high and the possibilities to get into this social transfer are too easy," Kretschmer criticized. Remedying this situation is only part of the solution, he said. It is also important, he said, to secure the EU's external borders and deport those who have no right to asylum.

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