German and Austrian Interior Ministers Discuss Migration Issues

PeoplePoliticians ♦ Published: October 17, 2022; 11:58 ♦ (Vindobona)

The German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser and her Austrian counterpart Gerhard Karner recently discussed the current migration issue on the sidelines of the EU Council of Interior Ministers. Karner insisted on a joint approach. Furthermore, the two discussed the preparations for the upcoming "Berlin Process".

German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser together with her Austrian counterpart Gerhard Karner. / Picture: © BMI Bundesministerium für Inneres

On the sidelines of the EU Council of Interior Ministers, the two interior ministers of Germany and Austria held bilateral talks on the sensitive issue of migration. In addition to the migration situation, the working meeting focused on preparations for the Berlin Summit on 20 October.

Migration has been a much-discussed topic in Austria in recent weeks. For some weeks now, more and more people have been coming to Austria to seek protection.

Now, at the EU Council of Interior Ministers, the Austrian Interior Minister Gerhard Karner had the opportunity to exchange views with his German counterpart Nancy Faeser and to discuss common positions.

The Austrian Interior Minister attached great importance to the fight against illegal immigrant smugglers: "Cross-border crime needs cross-border cooperation. We can only fight the tough battle against the smuggling mafia together - and the states in the Western Balkans are necessary partners in this," said Interior Minister Karner in his talks with Faeser.

"Therefore, it is good that Germany is pulling along here and wants to further advance cooperation in the fight against trafficking in human beings in Berlin," Karner continued.

In addition to the explosive topic of migration, the two interior ministers also discussed preparations for the so-called "Berlin Process". The meeting, which takes place annually on 20 October in Berlin, is composed of the interior ministers of eight EU member states, the respective EU Council Presidency - currently the Czech Republic - the EU Commission and the Western Balkan states.

The initiative was launched in Berlin in 2014. The goal set at that time was to promote regional cooperation with the states of the Western Balkans and the integration of the region into the European Union. Furthermore, meetings of civil and business associations also took place.

The aim of the Berlin Process is to solve outstanding bilateral and internal problems on the ground and to improve regional economic cooperation, which should lay the foundation for sustainable growth.

At the meeting with the Western Balkan states in Berlin next Thursday, the focus will be on combating trafficking in human beings and illegal migration.

Other topics include the fight against corruption and organised crime as well as dealing with returning jihadists.Other upcoming meetings in this context will take place on 21 October and 3 November 2022, where first the foreign ministers and then finally the heads of state and government will exchange views.

BMI - Ministry of the Interior - Bundesministerium fuer Inneres