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Proposals timid and inconsistent
The European Commission today presented a new package of measures on migration. The proposals do not go far enough, according to Greens/EFA Co-President Rebecca Harms, who said:
“The European Commission seems, at least, to have understood that the EU Member States must together face up to their collective responsibility for refugees. The proposal for binding quotas for the distribution of asylum seekers is a step in the right direction. Nevertheless, on the whole, the Commission’s proposals are timid and don’t go far enough. The Commission must ensure that the Dublin rules do not block the right to asylum.
The progress made on quotas is totally overshadowed by the proposals to combat people smugglers by means of UN-backed military operations. These military operations are focused on deterrence but will simply mean that desperate people seek out even more dangerous routes into the EU. We need more opportunities for legal access and greater commitment on combating the underlying reasons why refugees flee their country of origin.”
Jean Lambert, Greens/EFA MEP and Member of the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee, stated:
“The Commission should not let itself be intimidated by the Member States’ governments and should strongly defend the application of this quota system for those seeking protection. The European Commission must consistently support European solidarity, as the European Parliament has long demanded. So far, it has only proposed a distribution key for emergency situations, when we need a long-term view. The EU has to stop seeing those coming here as a threat. The ongoing emphasis on deter, control and return risks denying people their human rights and offering a more positive migration policy.”
A Greens/EFA paper outlining how the EU's asylum system should be reformed can be found at: http://www.greens-efa.eu/green-proposals-for-a-european-migration-and-asylum-strategy-13919.html