Speaking on the Latvian LNT TV channel on the morning on Wednesday April 13, the country’s prime minister Maris Kucinskis said that asylum seekers are not particularly keen to be relocated to Latvia.
He added that some of those selected to be moved to Latvia have even disappeared to avoid being moved to the Baltic country.
Kucinskis confirmed that Latvia will soon admit its next group of asylum seekers and that the country is adopting a gradual relocation process. He also praised the fact that the asylum seekers' admission is going slowly, and that the number of migrants arriving in Latvia is small.
Ilmars Latkovskis, the chairman of Latvia’s parliamentary citizenship, migration and society consolidation committee, also confirmed that Latvia has only admitted six asylum seekers; a number 10 times fewer than planned.
"The small number [of asylum seekers] allows for taking a very thorough individual approach and figuring out the corrections needed in the theoretical plans," Latkovskis said. He simultaneously voiced concerns that the slow relocation process could lead to the situation where Latvia has to admit 100 or more people at once.
Kucinskis denied the possibility of this situation. "We need to admit refugees from Greece, Italy and Turkey. The process is going quietly. We want to take in people with families,” he said.
“There have been cases where the people we pick for admission have disappeared, and the refugees' wish to go to Latvia is not strong.
“We are determined to keep working on the issue slowly and consistently.
“There are no projections for a steep influx at the moment," Kucinskis concluded.