The government of the Czech Republic decided to implement the 2015 EU relocation program, according to a statement by the Prime Minister of the country Bohuslav Sobotka.
According to the Ceske Noviny website, Sobotka said that his government is prepared to accept Syrian refugees directly from Turkey, as the new refugee plan between the EU and Turkey aims to reduce the burden of the EU neighbor country, which already received more than 2.5 million Syrian refugees.
Sobotka, praised the proposed plan between the EU and Turkey which foresees that for every Syrian refugee returned to Turkey from Greece, a Syrian will be settled within the EU. He named the plan as “one for one system” and said that the only difference between the previous EU relocation plan and the current one is that Member States will now need to take refugees from Turkey instead of Greece. “Instead of taking, for instance, 20 or 30 Syrians from Greece, we will take 20 or 30 Syrians from Turkey. This is actually the only difference,” Sobotka said.
The Czech Prime Minister underlined for one more time that his government is not willing to accept any more refugees than those agreed under the relocation plan. On Monday, at the EU-Turkey Summit, Sobotka has clarified that his government wants from the EU “to enforce the guarantee that this relocation (the send of Syrian refugees from Turkey to EU countries) will take place only within the framework of existing commitments.”
“The Czech Republic is not taking a larger number of refugees it has committed to in the past,” Sobotka had stressed on Monday and repeated on Tuesday.
In 2014, the Czech Republic pledged to voluntarily accept 1, 100 migrants from Italy and Greece and in 2015, the Eastern European country was instructed by the majority of the EU states to accept another 1,691 people in need, under the EU relocation program.