Frank-Walter Steinmeier understands Italy’s call for help amid the latest influx, but says Berlin is facing similar issues itself
German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier. © Philipp von Ditfurth/picture alliance via Getty Images
Germany can take in no more migrants, the country’s president Frank-Walter Steinmeier has said. He expressed sympathy for Italy, which has been overwhelmed by a new influx of arrivals, adding that an effective EU-wide redistribution mechanism must be created to address the problem.
On Wednesday, Italy’s Corriere della Sera newspaper interviewed Steinmeier shortly after he arrived in the country for an official visit. Among the topics discussed was the latest uptick in immigration and its impact on relations between Berlin and Rome.
The German president began by arguing that Italy should not have to deal with the crisis alone, and praised the country for “having shown so much humanitarian responsibility towards the refugees who came from the Mediterranean in recent years.”
He added that he takes “very seriously the requests for help that come from Italian cities,” but added that German cities are no better off in this respect as both nations have “heavy loads to bear.”