The Belgian Ministry refuses to pay the fines, so the contents are confiscated

The Belgian Ministry refuses to pay the fines, so the contents are confiscated

Belgian Minister of State Nicole De MoorsBelga's photo

Interested parties can try to get their hands on the freezer and the now-famous coffee maker on Friday. It remains to be seen what other items will be offered. The sequestration judge gave the green light to sell all furniture non-essential to the ministry's work online on January 12.

The bailiffs stood Already on the doorstep in February last year To confiscate tables, desks and cabinets, but the Ministry was then able to put a legal end to this. After several thousand lawsuits and millions in fines paid later, the judge ruled that no abuse had been committed by confiscating the goods, “since the Belgian state is not willing to pay voluntarily.”

Finished by the author
Carline van Esch is the foreign editor of the magazine De Volkskrant. She lives and works in Sierra Leone.

For years, the Belgian reception service Fedasil has been unable to fulfill its legal obligations to receive asylum seekers. To force the change, two years ago a judge imposed penalty payments of €250 per asylum seeker per day (more than €7,000 per month). Secretary of State De Moor refuses to pay this amount because, in her opinion, it does not provide a solution and would even have an attractive effect.

Not a place for single men

Belgian media reported that Fedasil has so far been convicted more than 9,000 times for violating the rights of asylum seekers. The shortage has risen to 3,000 places. Male asylum seekers without families are now being rejected and left on the streets in the cold of winter. According to the Council of State, this arrangement is against the law, but De Moor ignored this ruling as well.

According to the State Secretary, there is force majeure, but Vluchtelingenwerk Vlaanderen calls it political unwillingness because various options such as the use of hotels or defense personnel have not been considered. De Moor confirmed to Belga News Agency on Thursday that her ministry was making a “huge effort” to create more shelters. She is not happy with the legal action and confiscations, which she says “cost more than they yield.”

Lawyer Marie Dutrepont said: “It is unprecedented and deeply disturbing that the government has consistently ignored the principle of the rule of law and chosen to confiscate Cabinet furniture rather than comply with a judicial decision.”

Former Secretary of State for Asylum Theo Franken describes the takeover as a “sad low point”. He accuses De Moor of being only concerned with the new immigration law, while asylum and immigration policy is a “big mess”.

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