The FDP opposes the naturalization reform initiated by Interior Minister Nancy Faeser. “Now is not the time to simplify citizenship law,” FDP General Secretary Bijan Djir-Sarai told the Rheinische Post on Monday. “So far there has been no progress on repatriation and combating illegal migration.”
Referring to SPD politician Faeser’s plans to accelerate naturalization, he said that the granting of citizenship was the result of successful integration into German society. “It must not be at the beginning of the integration process.”
The SPD, Greens and FDP had agreed in their coalition agreement that foreigners in Germany could more easily obtain German citizenship. The Federal Minister of the Interior is now driving the issue forward. A draft law by the Ministry of the Interior provides that people in particular who have already lived in this country for several years can become German citizens more easily.
In a guest article for the Tagesspiegel, Faeser had called for foreigners who have a qualified right of residence to be able to naturalize after five years instead of the previous eight years. A period of three years applies to particularly well-integrated people. “With the new nationality law, we are therefore creating incentives for integration instead of building up hurdles and demanding long waiting times,” wrote the Federal Minister of the Interior.
Union criticizes reform plans
The Union has also expressed skepticism about the interior minister’s plans. The German passport should not be devalued, said CDU General Secretary Mario Czaja of the “Rheinische Post” on Monday. It must continue to apply: “First integration, then citizenship”.
The federal government’s integration commissioner, Reem Alabali-Radovan, defended the plans. “We want to create a modern immigration country. This includes naturalizing faster, better and more,” said the SPD politician to the newspapers of the Funke media group on Monday. Germany needs specialists and workers who “are happy to come and stay with us.” If you don’t do that, you’re wasting Germany’s economic power and prosperity.
Alabali-Radovan was alluding to CSU regional group leader Alexander Dobrindt, who had said: “Bargaining German citizenship does not promote integration, but has the exact opposite purpose and will trigger additional pull effects in illegal migration.”
FDP parliamentary group leader Christian Dürr told the Funke media group on Monday that Germany must become a modern immigration country. This includes directing migration to the labor market “and not to the social security systems”. Citizenship law must also be based precisely on this in the future. “Those who work hard and are well integrated should have the opportunity to become Germans.” Those who don’t want to integrate have to leave the country again. (Reuters/dpa)
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