Poland to accept no more than 400 refugees this year
PR dla Zagranicy
Polish PM Beata Szydło has announced that up to 400 refugees will be relocated to the country in 2016 as part of the previous government’s commitments on the issue.
Migrants arrive at a temporary camp after German officials sent them back to Austria in Schaerding Am Inn, Austria, 12 January 2016. German officials send around 200 migrants a day back to Austria since the start of the new year. Many of them have no valid documents or did not want to apply for asylum in Germany. Photo: EPA/CHRISTIAN BRUNA
In September 2015 the previous government led by Civic Platform (PO) agreed to accept 5,000 refugees, which combined with a previous agreement drove the number up to 7,000.
At a meeting in September the EU as a whole agreed to take in 120,000 refugees, predominantly from Syria and Iraq.
“These were bad decisions, but this government is a stable government and understands that there must be some continuity and we will thus honour the commitments of our predecessors, but only to the extent that Poland is capable of at the moment,” PM Szydło told a press conference.
“We would like to make use of the right to choose which groups of refugees are to be sent to Poland. There is also an additional requirement, that we would need to find people who would like to come to Poland,” the Prime Minister added.
The government has initially planned expenditures of PLN 10 million (EUR 2.3 million) to finance the resettlement, part of which will be reimbursed by EU funds. There are also plans for the creation of a special programme to help integrate the relocated refugees into Polish society.
A group of Polish officials are currently in Greece to verify the backgrounds of 67 refugees who have been allocated to Poland and are expected to arrive in the near future.
According to UNHCR just over a million migrants and refugees reached Europe by travelling across the Mediterranean last year, mainly arriving in Greece and Italy. It is thought 3,771 people died during the crossings. (sl/rg)