Greece Immigration Minister Ioannis Mouzalas says Merkel is sending back migrants for show | World | News

The German Government has announced it would return 392 asylum applicants back to Greece to have their requests assessed.

Speaking with German Ard Startseite TV, Greek Immigration Minister Ioannis Mouzalas said that the sudden decision to resume the return process to show “results to voters.”

“There was pressure from several EU countries on Greece to resume returns. I understand that EU governments want to show some results to their voters.”

Brussels’ law demands refugees seeking asylum to present an application to remain in the European Union in the country of first arrival.

However, processing in Greece was stopped in 2015 when hundreds of thousands of people reached the Greek coast by boat.

Chancellor Angela Merkel is due to stand for re-election this September against former EU Parliament President Martin Schulz. 

Ms Merkel has been under increasing pressure because of her “open door” policy which in 2015 saw nearly 890,000 people reach Germany from Greece and Italy.

Schulz warned electors about a repeat situation after more than 93,000 people, mostly sub-Saharians and Bangladeshi, arrived on Southern Italian coasts.

Calls for tighter deportation policies blew up after a 26-year-old Palestinian living in a refugee home carried out a knife attack in Hamburg at the end of July.

The Chancellor’s Christian Democrat Union is currently campaigning to ensure Merkel receives the fourth mandate to lead Germany.

The German Association of Towns and Communities called for “tougher action’ on asylum seekers considered potentially dangerous.

“Local authorities are of the view that those who are under orders to leave but do not depart must be deported. That secures acceptance in the population for refugees who obtain rights to stay,” said the association’s Managing Director Greg Landsberg.

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