Malta calls on Germany 'to take the lead' over migration

Joseph Muscat says that as Germany took the lead over the situation in Eastern Europe, the same should happen over the situation in the Mediterranean

PM Joseph Muscat with German President Joachim Gauck
PM Joseph Muscat with German President Joachim Gauck
Joseph Muscat meets Joachim Gauck

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat called on Germany to take the lead over the migration issue, explaining that the right atmosphere was being created across Europe for leaders to finally take action about the migration crisis.

In "a symbolic gesture" towards the crisis and the death of thousands of migrants in the Mediterranean, German President Joachim Gauck, accompanied by his partner, is on a state visit to Malta where he is trying to get a better understanding of the situation in Malta. The couple have different events set this morning during which they will be meeting refugees in Malta and NGOs working with migrants and asylum seekers.

Daniela Schadt meeting refugees at JRS
Daniela Schadt meeting refugees at JRS

Daniela Schadt, Guack's partner, visited with the Jesuit Refugee Services in Birkirkara this morning, where a number of Somali refugees shared their experiences of the hardships they faced at home and their perilous journey to Malta.

Leading the Maltese delegation at the San Anton Palace, Muscat thanked the German president for the commitment shown towards tackling the crisis.

"We follow your interventions in the public sphere and we know that you are a point of reference and crucial towards a shift in attitude. We can sense this shift, not only in Germany but also in other countries. The main obstacle is one of mindset (towards migration) and your interventions have helped to create the right atmosphere," Muscat told Gauck.

Malta, Muscat said, was committed to finding a short-term solution by going after the criminal networks responsible for trafficking, but medium - and long-term solutions must be found.

A planned EU-Africa summit, to take place in Malta, will bring together heads of state from European and African countries as well as "key countries ".

Muscat called for a change in global order as the humanitarian crisis had now become unbearable.

On his part, the German president said that Germany was working hard to achieve a sense of purpose and unity that lie within the principles of humanitarian law.

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