Inaction on migration is costing lives – Ian Borg

 Parliamentary Secretary for EU funds Ian Borg meets migration commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos

Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg meets Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos
Parliamentary Secretary Ian Borg meets Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos

Parliamentary Secretary for the EU Presidency and EU Funds Ian Borg, has given Malta’s full support to the European Commission’s efforts to address the dramatic spike in refugees reaching the southern and south-eastern EU borders, with full respect for their human dignity and rights.

Speaking during a bilateral meeting in Brussels with Dimitris Avramopolous, European Commissioner in charge of migration, , Borg expressed disappointment at the EU home affairs ministers’ failure to agree to the relocation of 120,000 refugees from member states facing disproportionate pressure.

“I hope that a concrete agreement will be reached at the follow-up meeting which will take place on 22 September,” he said, adding that failure to take action is literally costing lives and that Malta expects all Member States to show solidarity in line with the EU’s core values.

“Malta also supports the Commission’s proposal for a more permanent relocation mechanism to deal with crises,” Borg said, adding that the current focus on the situation in the Balkans should not detract from efforts to address the continuing flows in the central Mediterranean.

Borg and Avramopous agreed that migration is a phenomenon which goes beyond the EU, and that it is crucial to address the international dimension.

Borg emphasised that the EU-Africa Summit, which will take place in Malta in November, as an important opportunity to work together with the EU’s African partners in order to jointly agree on concrete actions.

Borg told the Commissioner that migration and asylum will be a clear priority during Malta’s Presidency of the Council of the EU from January to June 2017.

“Malta looks forward to working together with the Commissioner in this respect, as we are both committed to doing what is necessary in order to overcome the current impasse and improve the EU’s policies and regulations with regard to migration.”