Delia tells EU commissioner asylum seekers must be redistributed among member states

PN leader speaks to EU Commissioner Ylva Johansson, saying rejected asylum seekers must be repatriated with immediate effect

PN leader Adrian Delia
PN leader Adrian Delia

Nationalist Party leader Adrian Delia has requested the European Commissioner for Immigration Ylva Johansson to enforce a mandatory distribution of asylum seekers among European member states, as well as to immediately repatriate failed asylum claimants.

In a teleconference with the Commissioner, Delia said that Johansson had committed to insist for an immediate establishment of a redistribution process, at European level.

Delia told Johansson that Maltese reception centres for asylum seekers were overcrowded and that the country’s resources were under pressure.

“Malta can no longer be loaded with a heavier burden… if the commitment expressed today by the European Commissioner is taken seriously, it would mean that the burden on our country would be greatly reduced,” Delia said.

Delia has also asked the President of the European People’s Party (EPP) Donald Tusk to put irregular immigration on the agenda of an urgent summit Delia has requested to be made by video conference. “Little is being seen as a commitment from the rest of the European countries to properly share the burden,” Delia said.

Delia also said that migrant arrivals to Malta could prompt a humanitarian crisis under the present limitations prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. “No one wants us to be in this state. The Nationalist Party has always put people’s lives first and we will never allow people to lose their lives in the Mediterranean, but after these people have been rescued, it is necessary to immediately enter a mechanism of repatriation and distribution of people rescued among the other European Union countries.”