Today, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Council President Charles Michel, presented the roadmap Joint European Roadmap towards lifting COVID-19 containment measures.
Ska Keller MEP, President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, comments:
"We welcome the fact that the European Commission intends to play a coordinating role in the gradual phasing out of the measures. What did not work when the measures were introduced must now finally take effect, because the virus does not stop at borders. The governments of EU Member States should not compete with each other, but coordinate among themselves and with the European Commission. Fragmentation does not help anyone.
"Tackling the crisis also means that we leave no one behind. Refugees must be evacuated as quickly as possible from the camps on the Greek islands and the camps must be closed. The European Union must not leave the people in the dramatically overcrowded camps in inhuman conditions.
"We call on the governments of Malta and Italy to open their ports to the sea rescue vessels and to allow those seeking protection to land. All EU governments are obliged to take in refugees and not to shift responsibility onto EU countries at the external borders."
Philippe Lamberts MEP, President of the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, comments:
"We need a coordinated approach to the opening of borders for both workers and goods. It makes sense to coordinate efforts for a contact tracing app on a European-level and to ensure that this app is used with consent, anonymously and in accordance with data protection laws. A coordinated and EU-wide development of a vaccine and treatment based on open science to combat COVID-19, and to improve international pandemic preparedness, is vital.
"There must be a massive, multilevel and multiphase EU-wide stimulus package, in order to mitigate the social and economic consequences of the crisis, based on the EU budget. This will need to be driven by public investment and it is clear for us that the funds needed in that respect will need to be borrowed together and reimbursed together, reflecting the economic capacity of each Member State.
"So far, the Heads of States and governments have shied away from striking the Gordian knot: they must do so at their next meeting. If the Member States are unable to act together facing a challenge of this magnitude, what is at stake is the very raison d'être of the EU. For us it is clear that only together we will find the way to our collective recovery."