First Iraqi refugees to land in Hannover

With the first of 2,500 Iraqi refugees scheduled to arrive in Hannover on Thursday, Lower Saxony’s interior minister has called for their swift integration.

First Iraqi refugees to land in Hannover
Photo: DPA

Some 120 people will land at the Hannover airport at 2 pm. They are the first of the asylum seekers mainly from Iraq’s Christian religious minority who will call Germany their new home.

Many of the single mothers and ailing refugees have been in Syria and Jordan after fleeing Iraq, and the European Union called for 10,000 of them to be allowed into Europe in November 2008.

“We have an interest that they can earn their own living here so that they can be integrated into society as quickly as possible,” Lower Saxony’s Interior Minister Uwe Schünemann told broadcaster RBB.

He said since the refugees probably won’t have much chance to return to their home country they will be granted German work visas as soon as possible.