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Criticism from aid organisations: Bonn to take in ten refugee children

Criticism from aid organisations : Bonn to take in ten refugee children

Mayor Sridharan wants to bring up to ten children from refugee camps in Greece and on the Turkish-Greek border to Bonn. Aid organisations, however, consider this to be too few.

The city has agreed to accept up to ten children from the Greek refugee camps and the camps on the Greek-Turkish border. In an open letter earlier this month, Lord Mayor Ashok Sridharan stated that the city would accept up to ten children in need of treatment or unaccompanied and no older than 14. The press office was unable to answer a GA inquiry on Tuesday about the details.

Aid organisations call on the council to accept more children

Already at the beginning of March, the initiatives Seebrücke Bonn, Sea Eye Bonn and Jugend Rettet Bonn had contacted the Lord Mayor and asked him to set an example. In another open letter, the alliance now criticizes that the city does not accept more refugees. "We consider the number to be very small. With 331 free places that the city has for refugees, more would be possible", says Lailah Atzenroth from the pier.

The organisations are calling for the reception offer not to be limited to children under 14 years of age who need treatment or are unaccompanied. They also want the city to declare to the federal government that it is prepared to accommodate more refugees. The offer to take in children should also be made public so that other municipalities follow Bonn's example.

In his letter to the Alliance, Sridharan points out that the city has taken in more refugees in recent years than it had to according to the federal distribution key. The Lord Mayor writes about the situation at the EU borders: "The European Union is therefore urgently called upon to finally find a solution to end this situation. The people could not wait so long for the EU to find a solution, the Alliance replies.

Coronavirus aggravates situation in refugee camps on Greek islands

The Corona pandemic, for example, has worsened the situation in the refugee camps on the Greek islands. "They are actually intended for 7000 people, 42,000 live there," says Atzenroth. "There are far too few sanitary facilities." The people live in very confined spaces and can not wash their hands regularly. In addition, many of them have already developed pre-existing conditions as a result of their escape. This makes the corona virus an even greater risk.

The virus also keeps the city's integration commissioner, Coletta Manemann, concerned: "Of course, voluntary refugee aid is no longer as large as in 2015 and 2016, but it is still very active. At the moment, activities cannot take place because of the coronavirus pandemic."

(Original text: Dennis Scherer, Translation: Mareike Graepel)