Bavaria to reform asylum after hunger-strike
Bavaria is to make sweeping changes to how it deals with asylum applicants, the online edition of Der Spiegel reported Tuesday, two days after police cleared a camp of 50 hunger-strikers, many of whom were in a critical condition.
Bavarian state premier Horst Seehofer called a special meeting on Monday evening to discuss improvements to the current system after police the night before cleared Munich's central Rindermarkt square of asylum-seekers who were on hunger strike to demand the right to stay in the country.
The state government committed to making improvements to the Bavarian system, which the refugee organization Pro Asyl condemned as "the peak of hard-heartedness."
Community and church groups are to participate in talks aimed at replacing the current system of communal housing with increased decentralization and to increase the number of social workers, as well as caretakers in existing provision centres to minimize conflict there.
A decision on what funds will be allocated to which church and community groups is expected before parliament takes a break for the summer holidays.
The state has also vowed to lobby for greater efficiency at federal level. At present, it takes the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) an average of one year to process an asylum application.
Thomas Hacker, Federal Democrat parliamentary leader in Bavaria told Der Spiegel that his party was committed to "continuing to improve conditions for asylum seekers and refugees."