Since the beginning of the year, around 81,000 people have fled to Germany from the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine, significantly fewer than in the first months of the war. This emerges from a response from the federal government to a question from the deputy chairman of the Union faction, Mathias Middelberg, which is available to the German Press Agency. According to this, as of March 31, 81,647 people were recorded in the central register of foreigners who had entered Germany in the period from January to March 2023 in connection with the war in Ukraine.

In view of this number, Middelberg accused Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) of misleading the public. The CDU politician referred to an interview statement by the minister from the week before last. Faeser had said: “Eight out of ten refugees come from the Ukraine. There can be no upper limits for humanity there.”

Referring to the total number of refugees and asylum seekers, Middelberg said: “The proportion of Ukraine refugees has fallen drastically compared to last year.” At the same time, the proportion of asylum seekers from Asian or African countries is increasing rapidly. In the first three months of this year there were almost as many new asylum applications in Germany as there were new arrivals from Ukraine.

Refugees from Ukraine do not have to apply for asylum

According to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, 80,978 people applied for asylum in Germany for the first time in the first quarter of 2023. Of these, 5,817 applications concerned children under the age of one year. Refugees from the Ukraine do not have to apply for asylum in Germany or other EU countries, but are accepted via the so-called mass influx directive. According to the Federal Statistical Office, the balance of immigration and emigration for 2022 resulted in a net immigration of 962,000 people from Ukraine.

“Federal Minister of the Interior Faeser is misleading about the development of migration to Germany,” criticized Middelberg, who is responsible for local politics on the Union’s parliamentary group executive committee. On May 10, the federal and state governments want to discuss the distribution of the costs for the accommodation and care of asylum seekers and refugees again. Last week, Faeser ordered the extension of stationary controls at the border with Austria. She justified this with the development of irregular migration to Central and Western Europe.