CDU Chairman Friedrich Merz accused Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) that too many people who have fled Ukraine continue to come to Germany without registering. “The federal government obviously underestimated that. We have to know who is coming,” Merz said in an interview with the “Tagesspiegel.” “If, for example, non-Ukrainian citizens come in. If hidden asylum seekers are among them. criminals do not take the women and children who seek protection here,” Merz said.
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The numbers would increase significantly. “This requires registration from day one in the places where the refugees arrive,” Merz emphasized. “In Poland it is brilliantly organized. Sometimes 50,000 people come to a place every day. They are systematically registered with the help of a German software company. There is a complete record of both those who come and those who pick them up.” Merz asked why the federal police could not do the same thing in the main train stations as in Berlin, for example, like their colleagues in the Polish-Ukrainian police. border.
“Now I looked at the situation in different places, and therefore it is clear to me: collectors must also be registered. Anyone displaying signs with suspicious offers should be checked. It is not enough for Ms. Faeser to put information websites online with warnings”, criticized the SPD Minister of the Interior for crisis management. “She thought it was right to kick out the state secretary of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Helmut Teichmann, who was responsible for the refugees and who was very well informed. She didn’t want it because she has a CDU party book. She could have taken action immediately,” Merz told the Tagesspiegel.
Head of the CDU to kyiv? “I am free from fear”
Merz can also imagine traveling to the Ukrainian capital, kyiv, which has been attacked by Russia, to show solidarity with the people there. “Personally, I’m not scared,” Merz said. “But as an opposition politician, you are quickly suspected of making a PR story. That’s why he’s a bit reluctant. More recently, the Polish and Ukrainian sides asked Foreign Minister Olaf Scholz (SPD) to travel to kyiv as the heads of government of Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia.
Merz called on the federal government to deliver more weapons, but acknowledged that the Bundeswehr seems to be reaching the limit of what it can deliver. “Other countries are doing much more than that. There are two or three airports in eastern Poland that have become real arms delivery centers to support the Ukrainian army,” Merz said. “And the Russian army is far from where I really wanted to be in. Arms deliveries give the possibility that Ukraine will not be occupied and ruled by Russia.”
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With a view to Georgia and Moldova, which could be Russia’s next targets, he called for preventive consideration of establishing a no-fly zone. “For states that are not in NATO, Europe must consider: are we prepared to protect these states better in the future than we did with Ukraine? For example, with no-fly zones before Russian forces invade there? That’s a question we at least have to ask ourselves,” Merz said.
Lindner tank discount? Great astonishment about the head of FDP
In view of the fact that fuel prices had risen to record levels as a result of the war, Merz advised Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) to distance himself from his tank discount idea and instead immediately reduce taxes on gasoline and diesel. “I must say that I am somewhat surprised, to say the least, that this is coming from the FDP of all people,” Merz told the “Tagesspiegel” and warned of the high deadweight effects for oil companies and refiners if the state paid a lump sum for each litre. Antitrust authorities are already investigating whether prices are being deliberately set so high to boost their own profits, even though the price of oil has fallen recently.
“The idea is clearly based on the will to do everything except what the Union has proposed,” Merz said of Lindner’s plan. “Our path is much simpler: reduce the energy tax and sales tax on diesel and gasoline from 19 percent to seven percent. That would be a little bureaucratic, fast and good help for everyone”.