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Frontex: “107,500 migrants entered Europe in July”

According to the latest Frontex figures, 107,500 migrants arrived in Europe in July, reaching a new record high. The migrants’ influx mainly hit Italy, Greece and Hungary, tripling the numbers of last year. To address the issue, EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos urged EU member states to show more solidarity towards each other and distribute refugees fairly between them, Berlingske and Xinhuanet.com write.

Frontex chief Fabrice Leggeri said yesterday it is “an emergency situation for Europe that requires all EU member states to step in,” as quoted in The Irish Independent and Cypriot media. Most media also quote German Chancellor Angela Merkel calling for the unification or at least the harmonisation of the rules, arguing that it is more than likely that in the future, the inflow of immigrants to the EU will become a much bigger issue than the Greek crisis. Most French and British media, as well as some other EU media, report that France and the United Kingdom are about to sign a cooperation accord on migration. Indeed, British and French ministers are to meet in Calais on Thursday to sign an agreement aimed at alleviating the disturbances involving migrants at the French port.

The Daily Mail reports that the UK Home Secretary, Theresa May, will travel to Calais to sign the agreement with her French counterpart, Bernard Cazeneuve. The Times reveals that British and French ministers, this Thursday, will also promise more joint operations against human traffickers helping migrants to travel to northern France, as well as increased security at Channel ports. BFM TV’s editorialist Ulysse Gosset adds that Bernard Cazeneuve will be in Berlin next week to look for more solutions to the crisis and that President François Hollande will also go to Germany to “try and conceive an EU-wide policy,” which could consist in hotspots to separate refugees from economic migrants, but also building infrastructures in the countries of origin.

Several media comment on an article in Handelsblatt reporting that according to the German government up to 750,000 migrants are likely to apply for asylum in Germany in 2015. The announcement, expected tomorrow, follows Angela Merkel’s warning on Sunday that migration was becoming a greater crisis for Europe than the Greek economic drama of the past five years, David Charter comments in The Times. An op-ed in FAZ writes that the Federal Government and the regional governments need to set limits on receptivity, adding that Chancellor Angela Merkel was right when she said that the refugee situation would be more difficult than the Greek crisis.

Von Jan Bielicki assures in Sueddeutsche Zeitung that not all refugees will be granted asylum, but maintains that as many asylum applicants are under 25, it might be an opportunity for Germany, which has become an ageing country.

Regarding the migrant crisis in Greece, notably in the island of Kos, all Greek media massively report that Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos is asking for the intervention of the EU at the highest possible level. Indeed, UN Refugee Agency noted that almost 21.000 migrants reached Greece last week, underlining that the number of arrivals is increasing dramatically, most media also report. According to sources from the Presidency, Mr Pavlopoulos believes that the convocation of a European Council in cooperation with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is a necessary precondition in order to give solutions to the issue of migration. Several articles continue to criticise the overall situation.

In an opinion article in Jornal de Notícias, Emídio Gomes recalls that every week there is news about human tragedies in the Mediterranean. German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development Gerd Müller advocates, in Passauer Neue Presse and Cypriot media, the creation of an emergency fund worth at least €10 billion and financed through the EU budget, claiming that “the European Commission must switch from vacation to emergency mode immediately.” In an interview with La Croix, Director of the UN Refugee Agency’s European Bureau Vincent Cochetel maintains that Europe has spent a lot on border protection, which is necessary, but did “nothing, or so little” to take in asylum seekers and help refugees settle in.

 

 

©europeanunion2015

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