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Promoting the integration of foreigners permanently living in Germany is one of the most important tasks of home affairs policy.

The aim is to integrate all people permanently and lawfully living in our country into society and to grant them the related rights and duties. Integration means living together as one society, not in separate worlds. Our society should be characterized by respect, mutual trust, shared responsibility and a sense of community. This is also how the parties in the governing coalition for the 17th legislative term have described it.

Integration should ensure that immigrants have equal opportunities and the chance to participate in all areas, especially social, economic and cultural life. To do so, people who come to Germany intending to stay must learn the German language and acquire basic knowledge of our history and our legal system, in particular the significance of Germany’s free and democratic order, the party system, the federal structure, the welfare system, equal rights, tolerance and religious freedom. And they should be familiar with Germany’s constitution and laws and should respect and abide by them.

Integration means feeling part of a community and developing a common understanding of how to live together in society. Integration can work only as a two-way process. It requires acceptance by the majority population and the willingness of immigrants to learn and respect the rules of the host country and to take responsibility for their own integration.

Immigrants should be able to become integrated and take advantage of the opportunities offered to all citizens and new arrivals in Germany.

The two main pillars of federal integration policy are the Residence Act and the Federal Expellees Act, which define in law the basic framework for federal integration services.

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