- Austria does not want any more Afghan refugees.
- Integrations of the Afghans into Western society is “very difficult”.
- Austria already hosts the fourth largest Afghan community in the world.
Over 123,000 civilians were flown out of Kabul by the US and western allies after Afghanistan’s capital city fell into the hands of Taliban terrorists in mid-August.
The majority of those Afghan refugees will be provided with asylum in the USA, but the European Union also agreed to take in 30,000 fleeing Afghans.
While Germany and France showed eagerness to accept the refugees, Austria was among the nations that blatantly rejected the idea of more Afghan arrivals.
Austria’s chancellor Sebastian Kurz announced that Austria already has enough migrants from Afghanistan, and the country will take no part in the resettlement of Afghan refugees evacuated from Kabul after the Taliban takeover.
“We won’t welcome any fleeing Afghans into our country as long as I’m in power,” Sebastian Kurz declared in today’s interview with Italian La Stampa newspaper.
Kurz insisted that Austrian government’s position on the issue was “realistic” and didn’t mean that there was a lack of solidarity with other EU capitals on the part of Vienna.
“After more than 44,000 Afghans arrived to our country in recent years, Austria already hosts the fourth largest Afghan community in the world” per capita, the chancellor reminded.
The problem is that “integration of Afghans is very difficult” and requires extensive efforts that Austria simply can’t afford at the moment, the 35-year-old conservative politician said. They mostly have a low level of education and completely different values compared to the rest of the country’s population, he pointed out, adding that more than half of young Afghans living in Austria supported religious violence.
Vienna was still eager to help the distressed Afghans, as it was allocating 20 million euros to assist Afghanistan’s neighboring countries in resettling the refugees, Kurz said.
But the European Union policies from the times of the 2015 migrant crisis – when hundreds of thousands of people fleeing conflict in North Africa and the Middle East were let into the bloc – “can’t be a solution for either Kabul or the European Union” anymore, Kurz said.
The Austrian leader insisted that it was “now clear to all European governments that illegal immigration should be tackled and that Europe’s external borders should be made secure” to solve this problem.
Sebastian Kurz believes that the European Union must work to break “the business model” of human traffickers who deliver people to Europe. As for the migrants, they should be turned around at the EU borders and sent back to their countries of origin or to safe third-party nations.