Min­is­ter calls for more ef­forts to stop cross­ings

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Al­ter­nate Min­is­ter for Cit­i­zens’ Pro­tec­tion Yian­nis Panousis has called for more ef­forts to be made to stop un­doc­u­mented mi­grants from cross­ing to Greece from Tur­key. Speak­ing to Para­poli­tika news­pa­per on Satur­day, Panousis also said that other Euro­pean Union mem­ber-states need to be more will­ing to ac­cept mi­grants and refugees. “You have to stop them in Tur­key,” he said. “You can­not do this in the sea, you can­not drown them. There also needs to be a re­dis­tri­bu­tion within Europe based on pro­por­tion­al­ity, but few are ac­cepted.” EU min­is­ters failed to agree on July 20 on how to re­dis­tribute a to­tal of 40,000 mostly Syr­ian and Eritrean mi­grants from over­stretched Italy and Greece. They agreed to start re­lo­cat­ing a lit­tle over 32,000 of the ar­rivals among the EU’s 28 mem­bers in Oc­to­ber, fall­ing around 8,000 short of the tar­get agreed by EU lead­ers at a sum­mit in June. Panousis’s com­ments came a day af­ter Prime Min­is­ter Alexis Tsipras chaired an emer­gency gov­ern­ment meet­ing to dis­cuss ways to tackle the refugee and mi­grant cri­sis. New Democ­racy ac­cused Tsipras of hold­ing a sim­i­lar meet­ing four months ear­lier and fail­ing to take any ac­tion since then. The con­ser­va­tives also ac­cused the prime min­is­ter of not ac­knowl­edg­ing the work done by the Greek coast guard to res­cue mi­grants cross­ing by sea from Tur­key. The op­po­si­tion party ac­cused Tsipras of “con­tin­u­ing to send in­vi­ta­tions to all illegal im­mi­grants” to come to Greece.

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