Defending Refugees

Catholic bishops in Germany and Austria have urged their countries to continue accepting refugees, despite demands for new restrictions after violence on New Year’s Eve in Cologne and other cities. “We need a reduction in numbers, but fixing an upper limit would be difficult,” Bishop Stephan Ackermann of Trier told the daily paper Trierischer Volksfreund Jan. 27. “We also need flexibility. But it’s up to politicians to say how this can be achieved in practice, and it can’t be done only at a national level,” he said. Some Germans have called for a cap on refugees, following violent incidents involving people newly arrived from Syria and other countries. Meanwhile, the German church’s special representative for refugees said he believed a cap would violate the Geneva Convention and Germany’s Basic Law. “Christians cannot allow people who’ve faced untold suffering and are needing help to encounter closed borders,” Archbishop Stefan Hesse of Hamburg told German media.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The latest from america

Even in our relationships with family and friends, forgiveness can be hard to come by.
Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati, the archbishop of Santiago, Chile, the Vatican announced on March 23.
Gerard O’ConnellMarch 23, 2019
Sister Bibiana Emenaha
A combination of a rapidly growing population, extreme poverty, unemployment and armed conflict push people to cross Nigeria’s porous borders in search of a better life.
Linus UnahMarch 22, 2019
As we come to grips with a national history of violence, greed and racialized privilege, this fable of noblesse oblige rings hollow.
Brandon SanchezMarch 22, 2019