Municipalities expect more than 100,000 refugees

Some 520,000 people have already fled to surrounding countries, including Poland, Hungary and Russia, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said. He has rarely seen such a rapid increase in the number of refugees.

Germany also expects more people. First, the refugees would reach neighboring countries of Poland or Romania. “However, it can be assumed that significantly more than 100,000 people will also arrive in Germany in the near future,” said the director general of the association of cities and municipalities, Gerd Landsberg, the Handelsblatt.

The first war refugees arrived in the Federal Republic over the weekend, but initially their numbers were relatively small. Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) said Sunday evening after a meeting with her EU colleagues: “All EU states are ready to welcome war refugees from Ukraine. This is a strong response. European Union to the terrible suffering that (President Vladimir) Putin is causing with his criminal war of aggression ”.

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Meanwhile, the FDP is campaigning for a refugee summit to coordinate the admission of refugees. “The convening of a crisis summit in Germany would be an important step in coordinating upcoming challenges together with federal, state and local governments,” said the parliamentary director of the FDP parliamentary group, Stephan Thomae, of the Handelsblatt.

Refugees from Ukraine find accommodation in NRW

Even if in the current situation it is not yet clear how long the flow of refugees will last, precautions must be taken immediately to welcome women and children in particular. “Spontaneous accommodation with families and friends is not a long-term solution for people,” said the FDP domestic politician.

Federal and state governments should cover the costs of refugees

Local political spokesman for the SPD parliamentary group, Bernhard Daldrup, warned that action should be “well prepared but not rushed”. If there are larger flows of refugees, some of them will definitely want to go to Germany, he said. But at the moment it is unclear how people are distributed, so a refugee summit would have come too soon. It is important that the Federal Ministry of the Interior communicates closely with the federal states, which in turn exchange information with the municipalities and central municipal associations.

However, the Union points out that housing options in federal states were already limited before the escalation in Ukraine. “We now need a quick and reliable inventory and continuously updated picture of the capacities available at national level,” the parliamentary group, vizin Andrea Lindholz (CSU), told the Handelsblatt.

“A refugee summit would be just one step among many”. Much more important is “systematic and permanent coordination between all the actors involved”.

Municipalities and the real estate industry have warned to hurry to arm themselves for the largest movements of refugees from Ukraine. “In a first phase, it is now up to the federal and state governments, together with the municipalities, to make the necessary preparations for the reception and care of refugees,” said the head of the Landsberg City Association. “A refugee summit involving other actors should therefore follow promptly in a second phase.”

The central association of the real estate industry ZIA wrote to Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) requesting that a refugee summit be held because of the upcoming challenges. “There are already crisis-related demands on the provision of apartments and social initiatives by our real estate companies,” said ZIA President Andreas Mattner. “We must prepare now for the growing need for shelter and shelter, as our situation is already tense.”

This is Handelsblatt’s report on the developments of the war in Ukraine:

According to Landsberg, cities and municipalities are ready to welcome, care for and integrate people within their means. “In addition to accommodation and food, the necessary measures also include crèches and the provision of teaching opportunities in schools,” said the head of the association of cities.

“However, we also expect federal states to get their initial reception facilities back into operation and organize the distribution of incoming people,” Landsberg added. The costs of this “challenge to society as a whole” should be borne on a permanent basis by the federal and state governments.

The costs of refugees could weigh on public budgets for several years. The European Union is already preparing to grant Ukrainian war refugees the right to stay for up to three years.

EU interior ministers want to meet again on Thursday to agree on details. This is the EU directive on the granting of temporary protection, drawn up after the war in the Balkans in the 1990s, but not yet applied. According to Faeser, refugees from Ukraine do not have to go through an asylum procedure.

More: Khrushchev’s great granddaughter Khrushcheva: “Putin wants to show the world that he is not a little man”

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