Sakova: Social Benefits in Slovakia Not Motivating Enough for Migrants

7. januára 2019 12:56
Bratislava, January 7 (TASR) - Slovakia's social benefits provided to citizens of other states aren't currently motivating enough for illegal migrants and asylum-seekers to stay in Slovakia, Interior Minister Denisa Sakova (Smer-SD) has stated for TASR, adding that 178 asylum applications were registered last year, of which six were accepted. According to Sakova, the Interior Ministry puts emphasis on thoroughly verifying every person from the security viewpoint throughout the asylum procedure. From a European perspective 2018 brought positive results in the area of migration. "In general, the situation in recent years is considered to have stabilised somewhat, and the number of requests for asylum in the EU is declining. This was achieved thanks to multiple measures," said Sakova, adding that over the long term Slovakia has supported resolving not only the consequences of migration, but also its causes. Regarding the high media profile case of the possible reception of Syrian children, she clarified that the children were supposed to be accepted from reception centres in Greece. Even though it was declared that they were from Syria, it isn't an easy task to verify their origin. As an example she mentioned the migration wave in 2015 that was also supposed to be from Syria and was supposed to consist of refugees from the Syrian Civil War. Today it's clear that the majority were economic migrants and that their countries of origin weren't under threat of conflict. Several things didn't add up in the case of the Syrian children. "It was found that they were people in the age group of 17 to 18 years, and that the 17-year-olds weren't orphans but unaccompanied juveniles," said Sakova, stressing that when it comes to people younger than 18, different conditions and rights apply regarding asylum procedures and integration into society. "Asylum-seekers know this, and they often provide misleading information regarding their age," she said, adding that verifying their true age is complicated. This activity is currently on hold. Sakova stressed that the security of Slovak citizens is paramount. Sakova thinks that the EU is currently approaching migration issues more effectively than in the past. She clarified that in 2018 an 80-percent decrease in migration was observed on the central Mediterranean route between Libya and Italy. Conversely, a larger increase than in recent years was observed on the eastern Mediterranean route connecting Turkey, Bulgaria, Cyprus and Greece. She added that a significant 133-percent increase has been observed on the western route between Morocco and Spain. zel/df/bub
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