New Dublin rules ‘very far from acceptable’

EPA/FELIX KAESTLE

Three asylum seekers sitting outside the state refugee reception centre in Messstetten, Germany.

New Dublin rules ‘very far from acceptable’


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A proposal for a new Dublin system was tabled by Estonia, which holds the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU, on November 29.

Commenting on the draft plans, the European Parliament’s lead MEP on the Dublin regulation, Cecilia Wikström (ALDE, SE), said: “I welcome the work of the Estonian presidency in attempting to reach a common position in the Council on the Dublin regulation. The proposed system however is very far from what could be an acceptable solution for the European Parliament. If the Council were to agree on such a position it would make negotiations between the co-legislators very difficult.”

Wikström warned the proposal would perpetuate the current failed ad hoc responses of the EU to the migration crisis, instead of building a permanent system which could work both in times of normal and high pressures.

“I would urge member states to carefully study the position of the European Parliament, adopted with a very large majority. The Parliament will be a constructive and ambitious partner in the legislative process, but we will not accept to repeat the mistakes of the past.”

A broad majority of MEPs endorsed the European Parliament’s negotiation mandate on Dublin on November 16, calling for a mandatory relocation of asylum seekers to ensure that they are fairly distributed among member states and that the system will work on the ground.

EU member states have still not agreed on a common position, but hope to be able to do so during the first half of 2018, after which the inter-institutional talks in view of reaching a final compromise could begin.

The Maltese and Estonian presidencies have been sounding out member states on their views on a new asylum system.

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