The Washington Post reports
Hundreds of thousands of people streamed into the country during the fall of 2015, most of them fleeing wars in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. The influx eventually resulted in more than a million asylum requests in Germany, putting a strain on the country’s resources and inflaming anti-migrant sentiment among sections of the population.
Although the number of new arrivals has dropped sharply since the peak of the influx, the impact of so many asylum-seekers remains a topic of hot debate in the country of 80 million. A parliamentary investigation could keep the spotlight on the issue for years to come.
Beatrix von Storch, a lawmaker for the party known by its acronym AfD, said recent revelations about alleged corruption at the government agency that handles asylum requests would be part of the proposed parliamentary probe.
But she added that AfD, the biggest of four opposition parties in parliament, wants the investigation to go all the way to the top.
“It’s about the overall political responsibility for these policies,” she told reporters in Berlin.
Asked how the government should have reacted to the thousands of migrants streaming through the Balkans to Hungary and Austria, AfD lawmakers suggested Germany would have been within its rights to turn them back at the border.
“There was no war in Austria,” from which most migrants entered Germany, von Storch said.
For the motion to pass, AfD will need support from other parties.
AfD’s co-leader, Alexander Gauland, said he hoped the motion would get backing from the pro-business Free Democratic Party and conservative sections of Merkel’s Union bloc.
The German population has intensified its distrust of migrants following several crimes and acts of terror carried out by some of them. .The German government has even tried to make deals with Turkey to help reduce the influx.
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