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The Bundestag
The bill was backed by 371 lawmakers while 226 voted against itImage: Kay Nietfeld/dpa/picture alliance

Germany passes bill to speed up asylum procedures

December 2, 2022

The ruling coalition parties all voted in favor of the bill. But it did meet opposition in the Bundestag, with the CDU/CSU opposition conservative bloc particularly critical.


The lower house of the German parliament passed a bill on Friday to hasten asylum procedures.

The bill intends to offer integrated asylum seekers the chance to stay in Germany long-term.

Those who have lived in Germany for five years will be offered the chance to apply for long-term residence, under the proviso they have not committed a criminal offence.

There are certain specifications that the foreigners will have to meet, though, if they wish to extend their stay. Knowledge of the German language is one requirement, but also evidence they can sustain their stay financially, for example through work.

The bill also aims to speed up the asylum appeal procedure, which according to the federal government currently takes an average of more than two years.

Opposition to the bill

The legislation did meet plenty of opposition in the Bundestag, though, with 226 parliamentarians voting against it.

Friedrich Merz and Thorsten Frei attend the Bundestag session
CDU leader Friedrich Merz (left) and Thorsten Frei (right), deputy chairman of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group, both voted against the billImage: Kay Nietfeld/dpa/picture alliance

The ruling coalition parties — the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), the Greens and the Free Democrats (FDP) — all voted in favor of the bill, with 371 lawmakers in total backing it. Fifty-seven abstained.

The CDU/CSU opposition conservative bloc, the hard-left Die Linke (The Left) party and the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) all voted against.

In giving the green light to the bill, the CDU/CSU opposition conservative bloc accused the ruling coalition of rewarding rejected asylum seekers who had not contributed to the clarification of their identity for years.

In the end, the bloc said, the rejected asylum seekers would be rewarded at the expense of honest foreigners who disclosed their identity and could thus be deported more easily.

Steinmeier commemorates Rostock pogrom

jsi/jcg (dpa, AFP, epd)

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