Irish author Colm Tóibín has said he wishes that Ireland would follow Germany’s lead in dealing with the Syrian refugee crisis.
Writing in the Guardian, he said it seemed "a bit rich" that last weekend Ireland changed its position from agreeing to take in 600 refugees, to cite a figure of 1,800 before a further suggestion of 5,000 arose. "As each member of government was interviewed, the numbers went up as though they were playing a game of poker," he writes.
"I welcome the warmth with which the refugees were received in Germany. Since its government, however, has been active in preaching to the rest of us in the EU about rules, and skilled at using regulations as a way of wielding power within the union, it might be worth pointing out to Germany that it should have called for an emergency conference of European leaders before it acted, and that it should have asked the European commission to lead the way rather than behaving unilaterally.”
He welcomed the German decision to accept hundreds of thousands of refugees, "I wish Ireland would follow Germany’s example by dealing humanely, or less shamefully, with the 4,500 asylum seekers under our direct control."
Nobel Prize-winning Turkish author Orhan Pamuk also writes on the refugee situation, "Despite this sense of hope, we must not forget why these people have lost their countries. It is because President Bush wanted a war in the Middle East to raise his profile and to get votes.
"And we must not underestimate the task ahead. In particular I hope that Germany does not treat these people as they treated the Turkish people 30 or 40 years ago: as guest workers with only temporary status. It is encouraging that all the signs so far point to Germany offering refugees citizenship and giving them the responsibility of being Germans in the future."