Germany says 130,000 refugees have vanished

German government clarifies 130,000 registered asylum seekers have gone missing

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Refugees wait of their meal in the central refuge for asylum seekers, or ZAST, in Halberstadt, Germany, Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2015.

Updated Feb 27, 2016

German government said on Friday in a parliamentary document that 130,000 asylum seekers -13 percent of the total of those who have arrived in Germany in 2015 - have vanished.

In response to a question which was asked by a lawmaker of the Left Party, the government said in a written reply that out of some 1.1 million refugees and migrants registered in 2015, "about 13 percent did not turn up at the reception centres to which they had been directed."

Officials from the government speculated that some of the missing asylum seekers may have travelled to another country or gone underground.

Frank-Jurgen Weise, head of the German immigration office also said that the identities of more than 400,000 people in the country remain to be unknown to authorities.

The lower house of the German Parliament (Bundestag) on Thursday approved a package of new and tighter laws on asylum legislation with 429 votes in favour, 147 against and 4 abstentions.

The new legislation aims to speed up asylum procedures and makes deportation of refugees and migrants easier. It also repeals the current right of asylum seekers to bring their family after completing two years in Germany.  

According to a spokesman for the interior ministry, the package can help address the problem, bringing new order to the registration process, allowing authorities to store personal data under a common database to preclude repeated registrations.

TRTWorld and agencies