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MEPs urge Switzerland to cancel "discriminatory" quotas on Eastern Europeans

Plenary Session Press release - Citizens' rights / External relations24-05-2012 - 12:47
 

Parliament has called on the Swiss government to revoke a "discriminatory and unlawful" decision to reimpose quotas on long-term residence permits for Polish, Lithuanian, Latvian, Estonian, Slovene, Slovak, Czech and Hungarian citizens, in a resolution adopted by MEPs on Thursday.


In the resolution - adopted with 486 votes in favour, 30 against and 27 abstentions - Parliament "highly regrets" the reintroduction of quotas restricting the free movement of people, which was the subject of an agreement between the EU and Switzerland in 1999.


The measure is "discriminatory and unlawful" as it targets EU citizens on the basis of their nationality, stress MEPs, adding that there is no legal ground to allow this in the existing treaties between Switzerland and the EU.


MEPs are concerned that the Swiss Federal Council is considering further restrictive measures and say the EU and Switzerland should improve cooperation to ease their citizens' free movement. Parliament also asks the Commission to urgently raise this issue with the Swiss government.


German and Austrian taxis


Parliament reiterates its concerns regarding Swiss authorities’ refusal to allow German and Austrian taxis to take passengers from Swiss airports and asks the Commission to check if this is compatible with the 1999 agreement.


Procedure: Non-legislative resolution

REF. : 20120523IPR45697
 
 
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