The EU agreed on migration reform, the Czech Republic was in favor: The countries will divide the refugees, or they will help in other ways | News

Today, after many years of futile efforts, the states of the European Union agreed on a migration reform counting on mandatory solidarity with countries overloaded with asylum seekers as well as faster processing of unsuccessful applications. This was announced by the Swedish presidency of the bloc after a meeting of the interior ministers of the member countries.

After a day-long negotiation, the vast majority of countries supported the compromise proposal, which will serve the EU Council for further negotiations on the final form of the migration rules with the European Parliament. The Czech Republic also voted in favor, according to diplomats, only Hungary and Poland were against. According to Minister Vít Rakušan, the Czech Republic, together with other states accepting refugees from Ukraine, negotiated an exemption from the obligation to financially assist overburdened Southern European states.

“The approved proposals are key to a good balance between responsibility and solidarity,” Swedish Migration Minister Maria Malmer Stenegard said after the meeting. According to her, the reform will benefit all EU countries, as it will relieve those overburdened and at the same time speed up asylum procedures and help speed up the return of rejected applicants.

Instead of binding quotas for the redistribution of migrants, which were rejected by the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary when they tried to introduce it seven years ago, the approved proposal envisages that relocation will be only one option to help overburdened countries. Other options should be a direct financial contribution and other help, for example sending experts or material support. According to the Austrian, however, this does not apply to the Czech Republic, Poland or the Baltic states, which have enough to worry about with refugees from Ukraine.

“At this moment, if we have more than 300,000 Ukrainians on our territory, we will not pay a solidarity contribution to anyone,” the minister said after the meeting. According to him, the approved text is a balanced compromise in which it is important for the Czech government that the idea of ​​mandatory quotas has been definitively dropped. But at the same time, the Czech Republic showed that it is not just a country that “complains”, but that it negotiates constructively.

The European bloc has been trying in vain for a long time to agree on the reform of the migration and asylum policy, which was presented by the European Commission in response to the dysfunction of the existing rules during the refugee wave of 2015. The key part of the reform regarding solidarity with the busiest states remained out of the interest of politicians for a long time due to sharply divided views. However, the Swedish presidency successfully led the EU states to an agreement at a time when the number of migrants heading to Europe was significantly increasing.

The approved proposal also assumes that the countries through which immigrants are heading to the Union will have new responsibility for the accelerated asylum procedure, which is supposed to speed up the return of unsuccessful applicants to their country of origin. During this procedure, lasting up to 12 weeks, people arriving from countries considered safe will be held in detention centers at the border and authorities will review their eligibility for asylum. If they reject it, the applicants head straight back. Some non-governmental organizations opposed this practice, and Germany wanted to exempt families with small children from it, but backed down after pressure from other states.

Source: Zprávy – by

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