GUE/NGL MEPs have condemned in the strongest possible terms an EU-wide police operation that will see heightened security checks within the Schengen zone – at airports, train stations, and at border crossings – in a bid by EU leaders to curb what they describe as 'illegal' migration.

The group has sent an open letter to the Justice and Home Affairs Council outlining their concerns with this new operation, dubbed 'Mos Maiorum'.

Mos Maiorum, set to take place from 13 to 26 October, will be coordinated by the Italian Ministry of Interior in close cooperation with Frontex and Europol.

This operation is of serious concern to GUE/NGL as it undermines the right to seek international protection, ignoring the fact that a majority of asylum seekers are fleeing war or oppression. This operation will only see increased numbers of migrants imprisoned in detention centres.

Amid global instability and crisis, it is the absence of legal channels to access European territory that has led to an exponential increase in numbers of migrants entering the Schengen Area without documents. Rather than criminalising and further endangering migrants by carrying out police roundups, EU leaders should work to develop safe and legal ways to access protection in Europe for women, men and children in danger.

We need a collective European answer to search and rescue in the Mediterranean as well as a suspension of the Dublin regulation.

We also need to establish mechanisms to allow for the mutual recognition of international protection in all EU member states, and ensure the highest standards in asylum procedures, reception, and qualification to ensure that migrants and asylum seekers' fundamental rights are respected.

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group

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