Merkel defends migration policies: ‘Fear cannot inform us in political actions’

by WorldTribune Staff, July 28, 2016

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the spate of terror attacks in Germany are “horrifying and depressing” but won’t move the government to turn its back on Middle East refugees.

Germany will “stick to our principles” and “give shelter to those who deserve it,” said Merkel, who cut short her summer vacation to speak after a string of Islamist attacks in the country.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel. /Reuters
German Chancellor Angela Merkel. /Reuters

Merkel said Germany needs a better “early warning system” to spot radicalized Muslims among the newly-arrived migrants.

She said the central government would “redouble its efforts” against the terror threat, increasing staff numbers and resources for security services.

“The terrorists want to make us lose sight of what is important to us, break down our cohesion and sense of community as well as inhibiting our way of life, our openness and our willingness take in people who are in need,” Merkel said.

“They see hatred and fear between cultures and they see hatred and fear between religions. We stand decisively against that.”

Merkel did hint that Germany would act in the future to limit the numbers of migrants that were arriving at its borders.

“This is one of my objectives, immigration from last year was marked by illegal immigration, human trafficking, and this is not something that we can accept.

“Thousands die in the Mediterranean and we have said two things: first that we have to legalize the flow and that is why the voluntary agreement with Turkey contains humanitarian quotas, and also…a country like Germany, as strong as Germany, can not continue to take in such a flow of migrants and we have to limit the numbers.

“We say that the refugees can lead a good life close to their homes and that is why three billion euros are earmarked for refugees in Turkey. This is our responsibility, I am convinced of that.”