Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has ruled out taking in people fleeing Afghanistan, saying that it won’t happen during his chancellorship.
Kurz told Austrian broadcaster Puls 24, in an interview published Sunday, that he was “clearly against the fact that we now voluntarily accept more people — that will not happen under my chancellorship either.” The chancellor pointed to Austria having taken in over 40,000 Afghans in the past few years, describing this as a “disproportionately large contribution.” The entirety of the interview is set to broadcast Sunday evening.
European countries are grappling with the possibility of an increase in Afghan refugees with Taliban militants cementing control over Afghanistan amid the pullout of western allied troops.
Instead of accepting refugees, Kurz said, “we must do everything in our power” to improve the situation in Afghanistan, specifically pointing to concerns about women’s rights under the Taliban rule.
Kurz, a conservative, has said that controlling immigration is integral to protecting his country’s cultural identity and has made hard-line immigration policies a cornerstone of his chancellorship. Even as the Taliban entered Kabul, Kurz refused to soften Austria’s stance saying, “We have to deport as long as possible.”
Source: Politico eu