Relocating refugees: MEPs to urge EU countries to honour their commitments
Parliament will reiterate its calls to member states to transfer refugees from Italy and Greece to other EU countries, as agreed by the Council in September 2015.
Despite EU member states’ pledge to move 160,000 asylum-seekers from “frontline” countries Italy and Greece by September 2017, so far only around 18,000 persons have effectively been relocated, i.e. just over 11% of the total. Following a plenary debate with Council and Commission on Tuesday morning, MEPs will vote on a resolution on Thursday.
Progress by member states (you can find info on your member state here)
So far, only Malta and Finland are on track to meet their obligations to both Italy and Greece in time. Some countries, like Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovakia, are relocating on a very limited basis. Whilst Austria has announced it will start relocating soon, Hungary and Poland are still refusing to participate in the scheme at all.
Under two emergency decisions adopted in September 2015, 160,000 asylum-seekers with a high chance of being granted refugee status should be moved by September 2017 from Italy and Greece to other member states, where their applications are to be processed.
Debate: Tuesday, 16 May
Vote: Thursday, 18 May
Procedure: Council and Commission statements, with resolution