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Asylum requests move from Petit-Château to immigration office in Brussels from Monday
Following a spontaneous strike by Fedasil staff at Petit-Château and other reception centres, asylum seekers will be registered at the office for foreigners in Brussels from Monday.
The announcement by secretary of state for asylum and migration Nicole De Moor (CD&V), followed strike action by staff at refugee reception centres across the country. They were protesting about the conditions at the oversaturated network.
Refugees have faced long, sometimes overnight queues at the largest centre, Petit-Château in Brussels. Fights have recently broke out and there have been complaints from local residents about the queues and litter.
Speaking on VRT radio, De Moor said that the registration of applications for international protection would move to the foreigners' office near the Tour des Finances in the administrative quarter, north of the city.
The announcement followed a consultation on Tuesday evening between the secretary of state and the management of Fedasil, which manages the canalside Petit-Château reception centre.
Staff had called for an immediate solution to the problems at the centre while staging a walk-out during the middle of the day.
From Wednesday, there are plans to better organise queues, place barriers and reinforce police, added De Moor. "Last night we also had contact with the City of Brussels and Brussels police, and they will make an extra effort to keep the situation under control."