0531 GMT January 22, 2018
The presence of a large number of refugees in Germany, which stems from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s open door migrant policy, is currently one of the most important political, economic and social conflicts in Europe’s largest economy.
Her policy has seen more than 1.5 million refugees arrive in Germany since 2015, mostly from Syria and Afghanistan.
This helped the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) enter the Bundestag as the third largest party, as it took over 13 percent of the national vote in the general election on September 24.
German state interior ministers gathered in Leipzig on December 7-8 to discuss the thorny issue of refugees in the country.
It was agreed that the current ban on deporting Syrians back to their native country will remain in force for at least another year. In other words, Germany will extend a ban on deporting Syrians until December 31, 2018.
Undoubtedly, Germany has adopted a more rational and responsible role in dealing with the plight of refugees compared with other European nations.
Despite the anti-immigration approaches pursued by the AfD, Berlin is pressing ahead with its rational and responsible policies.
Berlin’s support for refugees has even pushed airlines to refrain from returning them to their own countries.
Supporters of some of the far-right and racist groups have physically attacked some German officials who have shown support for refugees.
Meanwhile, the issue of refugees will top the agenda of the next German government which is set to be formed through a coalition between Merkel’s party, Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU), and the Social Democrats (SPD).
*Hossein Ziaee is an Iranian journalist based in Germany.