Posted on August 31, 2023

Belgium to No Longer Provide Shelter to Single Male Asylum Seekers

Associated Press, August 30, 2023

The Belgian government has imposed a ban on providing shelter for single men seeking asylum, arguing its insufficient reception capacity should be freed for families, women and children first.


On Wednesday, Asylum State Secretary Nicole de Moor said increasing pressure on asylum housing was expected over the coming months and she “absolutely wants to avoid” children ending up on the streets this winter. Instead, single men will have to fend for themselves.

The move was met with scathing criticism from human rights organisations.

“We thought we’d seen it all, but no. The Belgian government isn’t just sitting on human rights. It’s burying them by ‘suspending’ the reception of single male asylum seekers,” said Philippe Hensmans, director of Amnesty International Belgium.

De Moor said an influx of asylum seekers over the past two years in the nation of 11.5 million people had filled the shelter centres to near capacity of 33,500.

Last year, Belgium had nearly 37,000 applications for protection {snip}