DANES TO SEIZE VALU­ABLES TO PAY COST OF REFUGEES

The Denver Post - - NEWS -

copen­hagen, den­mark » Dan­ish law­mak­ers voted Tues­day to let po­lice seize valu­ables worth more than $ 1,500 from asy­lum- seek­ers to help cover their hous­ing and food costs while their cases are be­ing pro­cessed.

Af­ter more than three hours of de­bate, the mi­nor­ity Lib­eral Party govern­ment’s bill was adopted in an 81- 27 vote, with the sup­port of the op­po­si­tion So­cial Democrats and the anti- im­mi­gra­tion Dan­ish Peo­ple’s Party— Den­mark’s two largest par­ties. One law­maker ab­stained, and 70 oth­ers were ab­sent.

Amend­ments were made, in­clud­ing rais­ing the value of items the asy­lum- seek­ers can keep from $ 440 to $ 1,500.

That brings it in line with wel­fare rules for Danes, who must sell as­sets worth more than $ 1,500 be­fore they can re­ceive so­cial ben­e­fits.

Den­mark re­ceived about 20,000 asy­lum- seek­ers last year, one of the high­est rates per capita in the EU.

Den­mark is not the only coun­try tak­ing such ac­tion.

Some Ger­man states do take funds from refugees, and Switzer­land re­quires asy­lum- seek­ers to hand over cash of more than $ 996.

The bill was part of a raft of mea­sures that in­cluded ex­tend­ing from one year to three the pe­riod that fam­ily mem­bers must wait be­fore they can join a refugee in Den­mark.

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