Nearly 6,000 refugees sue Germany over delayed handling of asylum requests

An increasing number of asylum seekers in Germany fed up with the slow processing of their asylum requests have filed nearly 6,000 legal complaints about reviewing their refugee applications for too long.

The German Ministry for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) confirmed the number to the media outlet hr-info. The latest figures by BAMF estimate that as of May this year the body is facing 5,800 so-called “Application for failure to act” proceedings.

The number has skyrocketed compared to December last year, when the amount of similar cases stood at roughly 2,300, Die Welt reports, citing official figures. However, the exact amount of legal complaints against BAMF could be even higher. According to the agency it only included in the statistics the cases of those refugees who already applied for asylum in Germany.
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Migrants rest on the ground, Duesseldorf, Germany. © Wolfgang Rattay Far-right fears, protests see German city freeze refugee center construction

“Complaints over starting of an asylum proceeding could not be included in the statistics since those people do not possess an identification number,” BAMF spokesperson is cited as saying by Die Welt.

A refugee has a right to go to court against BAMF if his or her asylum request is being dealt with for more than three months without approval or denial. Such a complaint should be the reviewed by the respective court within a maximum of a year.

Last December, Sevim Dagdelen, an MP from the leftist Die Linke party, called for a reform of the asylum system in Germany. The lawmaker said the situation with the delayed cases by BAMF was an “organized state failure.”

In 2015, Germany welcomed over 1 million refugees. The amount significantly dropped since the start of this year, but not the number of asylum requests.

“In the first half of the year the number of asylum requests have doubled,” Focus cites the Ministry. What’s more, there are currently over half a million cases of unfinished asylum request proceedings that are gathering dust by BAMF, the agency revealed in the latest report.

That’s despite BAMF nearly tripling its staff in the past months and even opting for 48-hour quick asylum request proceedings.