In the decision, the Interior Ministry notes that even though there are some improvements through reforms, the treatment of asylum seekers in Greece still does not measure up to European standards. At the same time, the ministry states that the Dublin system remains a high priority for the EU and that Germany will support the development of a system that can function properly.

Pro Asyl has welcomed this decision as a step into the right direction but underlined that this implies that only those who manage to leave Greece and reach Germany on their own will get a chance to escape the desperate situation facing refugees there.

According to PRO ASYL, because of the inhumane living conditions that refugees must endure, it isn’t enough to stop deportations to Greece: “There is urgent need for Europe to rescue those seeking protection. Germany should pro-actively transfer and receive refugees from Greece, particularly those who are most vulnerable.”, said ProAsyl.

“There is no protection system for asylum seekers in Greece. Refugees are still being detained under completely inhumane conditions, often for months. Amongst them are many unaccompanied minors. Upon release from the detention centres, refugees are left to fend for themselves and often end up in destitution and homelessness. The misery of refugees is aggravated by the economic and social crisis in Greece”, argues Pro Asyl.

ProAsyl also called on the German government to stop blocking the reform of the Dublin-system. Because of the Dublin Regulation, refugees can only apply for asylum in the first European country they enter and the responsibility to protect refugees is being shifted to the countries at the EU’s external borders. ProAsyl stresses that this system is completely void of solidarity and provokes conflict between Member States with refugees bearing the brunt.

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