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    Theo Francken continues to reinforce his asylum policy

    The State Secretary for Asylum and Immigration, Theo Francken, has said he will reinforce his asylum policy.  He made this statement during his general policy for 2017 speech, which was presented in the De Standaard and SudPresse papers on Saturday.

    The European Dublin law determines which country is responsible for asylum requests. It will look at which European country a refugee arrived at and their family situation (family member already having a visa….).

    Theo Francken wants to make better use of this procedure by sending as many requests as possible to other European countries. In 2015, 1,913 people were deported using this procedure. The figure for 2016 is expected to be higher, De Standaard and SudPresse have said.

    The State Secretary is also calling for transfers to Greece to be as quick as possible. “That’s not the way asylum seekers will understand that they can’t choose their country”.

    Using the Dublin procedure is also a way for Theo Francken to reduce the workload for the General Commission for Refugees and Expats.

    The State Secretary is also planning other measures, Sud-Presse has revealed. These include new arrivals signing a declaration agreeing to apply for a visa, stricter student visa checks, and increasing the maximum stay in detention centres for those staying illegally. There is also the rationalisation and simplification of claiming back deportation costs.

    Sarah Johansson (Source: Belga)