FDP Chairman Lindner wants to get tougher on immigration

German Free Democratic Party Chairman Christian Lindner

The chairman of the German Free Democratic Party, Christian Lindner, advocates for a tougher German stance on immigration

  • He says Germany needs an immigration law and clear guidelines for immigration.

The Free Democratic Party (FDP) calls a tougher stance on immigration policy a requirement for a potential government participation after the federal election in September 2017. “We must distinguish between refugees, who have to leave Germany as soon as the situation in their home country allows this, and qualified workers who we want to invite into our country”, said party chairman Christian Lindner in an interview with the Funke Mediengruppe.

Germany needs an immigration law and clearer guidelines for immigration. Furthermore, he expects from Germany and France to start joint initiatives for border control and the securing of the Mediterranean Sea. “We must work with the governments in North Africa that people can file asylum applications in those countries — or applications for a legal entry into Europe, if they are qualified.”

Chances are blown on the EU level, Lindner criticises: “The refugees should not even get to the Mediterranean. And the NGOs must not become assistants of the human traffickers.” If rescue vessels are on the sea all by themselves and without embedment into an international strategy, “it’s a sign for the traffickers that they can leave refugees alone”, wanred Lindner. “The goal must be that the traffickers’ boats cannot leave the coastal region and that the refugees on board go back to where they started instead of getting into Europe.”

Germany, France and Italy must massively strengthen their engagement for the establishment of stable regions in Libya, according to Lindner. Furthermore, so-called “endangerers” — Muslims with ties to terrorist organizations who are suspected to plan terror attacks — who are subject to deportation must be brought into custody pending deportation faster and actually deported as fast as possible: “We must have clear agreements with the origin countries about the retake of their citizens and negotiate about this sturdily.”

Countries who don’t take responsibility for their citizens must feel consequences. “Those consequences can concern developmental aid, tourism or trade.” Immigration will remain an important topic, said the FDP chairman. “We have escalating costs for welfare, we have an increasing joblessness among low-skilled workers. We have an increasing number of refugees, we have migratory movements in Africa. None of those problems is solved.”

The Free Democratic Party is a classical liberal party in Germany seeking re-entry into the German Bundestag on September 24, 2017, after missing the five percent threshold at the last election in 2013. They are currently polling at around 8.5% federally.