Commission’s migration plan set to fail
GUE/NGL MEPs voiced their dissatisfaction at the Commission's latest and most comprehensive plan on migration unveiled today in its communication titled “A European agenda on migration”.
For GUE/NGL, the only positive and new element is the mandatory relocation mechanism, although questions remain on how it will work in practice and what the criteria will be. Otherwise not enough is done on resettlement, that still remains voluntary, nothing is said about other ways to access the EU, there is nothing about legal migration, except updating the blue card, and there is no mention about the revision of the Dublin regulation, something the GUE/NGL has repeatedly called for.
Many points that have been condemned by the group in the past feature strongly, including an increased budget for FRONTEX, CDSP intervention to “systematically identify, capture and destroy vessels used by smugglers”, the outsourcing of search and rescue operations, joint processing to third countries, swift return, safe country strengthening and fighting abuses of asylum.
Cornelia Ernst, GUE/NGL coordinator on the Civil Liberties committee, said: “In principle I welcome the announcement to finally create a proper relocation scheme. But any system that does not take the wishes of the migrants into account is set to fail. For now, only things like GDP and unemployment rates are mentioned. There is no talk of family ties, cultural aspects or anything that relates to the migrants themselves.”
Barbara Spinelli, GUE/NGL shadow on migration, commented: “The Agenda starts by stating that “the immediate imperative must be the duty to protect those in need”, yet the absolute majority of proposals do the exact opposite. Military actions are envisaged in Libya, as part of a strategy of externalisation of migration policies. Search & Rescue is replaced by Search & Destroy.”
MEP Spinelli continued: “Respect of fundamental rights in countries of origin and transit are not even mentioned. There is no firm commitment on relocation, and the numbers of resettlements for asylum-seekers in the EU are derisory. Quoting Gabriele Del Grande (Fortress Europe), the history studied by our children in school books will tell that in the 21st century thousands died in the Mediterranean and thousands were arrested and deported from our cities whilst people pretended not to see. This Commission's agenda on migration was, indeed, drafted with eyes wide shut”.