Merkel: "Yes, we did it"

In the late summer of 2015, Merkel's motto of "We can do it" characterised German migration policy. She now takes stock in an interview with Deutsche Welle.

Merkel: „Ja, wir haben das geschafft“
dpa

Berlin (dpa) - In the view of Germany’s Acting Chancellor Angela Merkel, Germany has successfully met the challenge of taking in hundreds of thousands of refugees since 2015. In an interview with Deutsche Welle published on Sunday evening, Merkel said in response to the question of whether "we" had managed it: "Yes, we have. But there were really many, many of us in Germany who pitched in, many mayors, many volunteers, and many who are still sponsoring refugees to this day."

In the late summer of 2015, Merkel's motto of "We can do it" characterised German migration policy. The chancellor also spoke of "wonderful examples of successful personal development" among migrants, such as those who had completed their final school exams here. However, not everything has been ideal, the CDU politician admitted. "And there have also been some dreadful incidents, like what happened on New Year's Eve in Cologne," she stressed. On New Year's Eve 2015, hundreds of women were robbed, sexually harassed and in some cases raped on Cologne's Cathedral Square. According to the Cologne public prosecutor's office, many of the accused were from Algeria and Morocco. The incidents in Cologne made the headlines worldwide.

Merkel described the influx of refugees and the coronavirus crisis as the greatest challenges of her 16 years in office. With regard to migration, she listed a number of shortcomings at the international level. "Of course, we have not yet succeeded in combating the causes of migration. We have not yet managed to ensure that Europe has a unified asylum and migration system."

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