Council of Ministers approves increase of capacity of detention centres for irregularly staying migrants
Today, the thematic Council of Ministers on security, justice and defence approved a series of measures, including the proposal of the State Secretary for Asylum Policy and Migration to increase the capacity of the closed detention centres for irregularly staying migrants.
The proposal of the State Secretary for Asylum Policy and Migration - which was approved today - plans to substantially increase the detention capacity in Belgium, as follows:
- First phase: Increase of the capacity of existing closed centres: this includes the creation of additional places in the following centres: the repatriation centre 127bis (in Steenokkerzeel); the transit centre Caricole (in Steenokkerzeel) and the centre for irregularly staying persons in Merksplas. The overall number of places in the closed centres should increase to 672 places.
- Second phase: Opening of new centres: The creation of a new centre for women in Holsbeek (50 places); the creation of a new closed centre in Antwerp (144 places) with specific places for irregularly staying third country nationals who cannot live in a group regime (such as ex-detainees, people with behavioural issues, etc.), by 2020; and the creation of a new closed centre in Charleroi (200 places), by 2021.
Overall, the detention capacity should evolve from 440 places (at the beginning of the legislature) to 1066 places. The State Secretary indicated that the increase of the detention capacity would allow to return more people irregularly staying in Belgium.
For further information, see the website of the State Secretary for Asylum Policy and Migration.