“We need to change the basic and mistaken principle underlying the entire Dublin system,” he said in reference to the EU rules that determine which country is responsible for examining an asylum application. On reception of asylum-seekers, “too many possibilities to detain asylum seekers remain, including in prison facilities, and there is no ban on detention of unaccompanied minors”.

On asylum procedures, “even if there are some improvements for vulnerable groups, they are not sufficient and most importantly, they are not excluded from accelerated and border procedures for transporting persons to alleged safe third countries. For all these reasons, my group will be voting against this package.”

Dutch MEP Dennis De Jong added criticism of the reform of the EURODAC regulation. Eurodac (European Dactyloscopy) is the European fingerprint database for identifying asylum seekers.

“It was never intended that law enforcement authorities would have access to this database. This criminalizes people and I say it loud and clear: the submission of an application for asylum is not a crime, asylum seekers are not automatically suspects and so on this point my group is adamantly opposed.”

Photo call: GUE/NGL MEPs will stage an action on this issue at 11.10 tomorrow (Wednesday) outside the hemicycle of the European Parliament

GUE/NGL Press:
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

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