Debate to be added: migration flows in the central Mediterranean  

MEPs are expected to add an item to the agenda to debate the current growing migratory pressure in the central Mediterranean on Wednesday afternoon at around 17.00.

While the number of persons crossing the Aegean Sea to reach the EU has fallen significantly, the number of those risking the central Mediterranean sea crossing, mainly from Libya to Italy, has continued to grow.

The idea of replicating the EU-Turkey deal to cope with migration flows from Libya, suggested earlier this month by Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat for the Council Presidency, was rejected by EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini.

Ms Mogherini instead announced €200m in EU funding to be allocated to the EU Trust Fund for Africa, to help prevent migration from Libya. This funding includes €3.2m to expand the current EU training programme for the Libyan Coastguard as part of Operation Sophia. Some of the money will be used to develop a programme of “voluntary returns”, helping some of the displaced migrants stranded in Libya return to their countries of origin.

Statement by the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the Commission

Debate: Wednesday, 1 February

#Libya #migration