UNHCR statement ahead of EU Council of Interior Ministers Meeting
The recent successive announcements of different border control measures by a number of European countries impacted by the refugee and migration crisis only underlines the urgency of establishing a comprehensive European response.
This response must be based on the creation of effective reception centers, with the support of all parties concerned including UNHCR, to properly assist, register and screen people upon arrival in Greece, Italy and Hungary. This must be accompanied by the rapid implementation of a relocation programme as proposed by the European Commission. People in need of international protection in accordance with international law should be relocated amongst all European Union countries based on a fair distribution mechanism.
UNHCR is concerned that the combination of different, individual measures might create a situation where large numbers of refugees seeking in Europe the protection they are entitled to receive in line with international law, will find themselves moving around in legal limbo.
In this context, the decisions of tomorrow's European Council of Ministers of the Interior are even more critical.
UNHCR Headquarters, Switzerland
- Melissa Fleming: +41 79 557 9122