Since the migration crisis in 2015, the EU has been looking for solutions on how to distribute asylum seekers among member states and how to return those whose asylum applications have been rejected.
The “migration and asylum package”, which consists of a series of legislative proposals, roadmaps and recommendations prepared by the EU Commission for this purpose, could not be accepted due to the different attitudes of the member states.
During the EU Presidency last year, France adopted the “step-by-step approach” in order to progress on the package, and progress was made on 2 elements of the package, namely strengthening the EU’s external borders and establishing a solidarity mechanism between member states.
It is aimed to reach a consensus on these two issues at the meeting of the interior ministers, which will start tomorrow and will last for two days in Luxembourg.
All member states agree on tighter border control, but there are still incomprehensible points on the line of “solidarity and responsibility”.
“adequate capacity” instead of “forced distribution”
According to a senior EU official, all member states agree that there will be no compulsory dispersal of asylum seekers to every country. Instead, the capacity to be declared by each country will be taken into account.
On the other hand, countries that accept relatively few refugees under the solidarity mechanism will support them with financial aid and personnel.
Although it is mentioned that 30,000 refugees will be resettled in the EU annually, and that a country that refuses to accept asylum seekers will pay 22,000 euros per refugee, the figures have not been agreed upon.
The said official stated that the voting on the package will be based on the principle of qualified majority, not unanimity. The official therefore noted that he was hopeful that a compromise would be reached, as member states were prevented from vetoing the package.
2022 was recorded as “the year when the EU received an unprecedented level of irregular migration since the migration crisis”.
In 2022, 330 thousand irregular entries were made to the EU, corresponding to an increase of 64 percent compared to the previous year.