The federal government will create 2,500 extra spaces for asylum seekers, the Het Laaste Nieuws and De Morgen reported on Tuesday. The Holsbeek asylum seekers centre, which closed in June, will open again. 265 people submitted asylum requests on Monday. If this upward trend continues, there will not be enough spaces by the beginning of September.
Belgium has 18,400 spaces for asylum seekers, which are currently almost filled. The government is planning to create 2,500 extra spaces so that asylum seekers don’t end up out in the cold during the winter. These spaces will be made in fire stations, already existing shelters like the Red Cross, and the Holsbeek centre.
These extra spaces will cost 15 to 20 million euros each trimester, according to Theo Francken, the State Secretary for Immigration and Asylum (New Flemish Alliance).