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Justice minister seeks asylum ideas in The Hague

Swiss Justice Minister Simonetta Sommaruga has gathered new insight on the issue of asylum policy after a trip to the Netherlands.

This content was published on November 9, 2011 - 10:10
swissinfo.ch and agencies

Sommaruga met the Dutch minister for immigration and asylum in The Hague on Tuesday and received some valuable suggestions, as she told the Swiss News Agency.

She visited a centre where up to 1,500 asylum seekers can live while waiting to see whether their applications are accepted. Social workers, doctors, lawyers and others involved in the proceedings all work under the same roof.

“They help ensure that each process is well prepared,” Sommaruga said. The preparation phase lasts a maximum of three weeks. A process itself lasts eight days.

“Quite a number of the rulings are challenged,” she said. The current Dutch system has been in effect since July 2010.

Switzerland is currently trying to reform its policy to speed up the process of handling asylum requests. Sommaruga was in Berlin last week to see how Germany handles asylum and integrates its new immigrants.

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