The refugee coordinator of the German government, Peter Altmaier, knows the consequences of Chancellor Angela Merkel's wide open door policy can't be ignored. After witnessing the uptick in crime since she let thousands of asylum seekers in the country, he is now calling for an escalation in Germany's deportation process.
"Last year, we had 37,220 voluntary returnees and 22,200 deportees," he said. "A realistic dimension for 2016 would be a doubling of these figures. That's where the states must take action."
Altmaier added that more than half of the refugee applications are currently being denied. He has also defended the EU-Turkey agreement, which requires that migrants who have reached Greece illegally by boat be returned to Turkey.
Atlmaier may be attacked as compassionless for his policy proposal, but when his critics look at the crime statistics in Germany following the refugees' arrival, they may admit he has a point.
In 2015, asylum seekers in Germany committed over 200,000 crimes, according to the Federal Criminal Office. Some of the most shockingly brutal attacks occurred on New Year's Eve in Cologne, where hundreds of women reported to have been sexually assaulted by Muslim refugees.
Another disturbing figure in the refugee report was that there were 266 instances of individuals suspected of being "fighters and members of terrorist organizations abroad."
Because of these unsettling trends, Merkel has faced pressure to limit the number of refugees seeking asylum in Germany. She has pushed back, however, insisting last week that her government just wasn't aware of the preparation needed to protect their external borders. This year, she said, Europe is on the "right track."