Germany’s Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier on Wednesday outlined steps needed to take the edge off the global migrant crisis, including tackling it at its root.


Frank-Walter Steinmeier


“First of all, we must deal with the cause of the refugee and migration problem. We must find political solutions for conflicts that force millions of people to flee their countries of origin,” Steinmeier said at the leaders’ summit on refugees in New York.


Speaking at the event organized by the US president, the German foreign minister called on nations to focus on fighting poverty and inequality. He said Germany alone had pledged $2.2 billion this year in relief aid funds.


“Secondly, we must improve ways of managing global refugee and migrant flows… Thirdly, we must support transit countries like Jordan, Lebanon, Niger and Kenya,” he continued.


Steinmeier stressed that the world must pull together to achieve these objectives and “show more solidarity” in resettling refugees, sheltering them and giving them access to jobs and education.


Germany took in last year more than a million refugees who fled war and poverty in their home countries, many of them from Syria. The influx raised concerns at home and cost Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling party votes in the local elections.