Malta drafts EU proposed solution to migrants’ problem

"Now we need Europe to respond and our Government to back it,”

Tista' taqra bil- Malti.

The European People’s Party, the largest political cohort in the European Parliament is placing the agenda an agreement on Migrant Policy. Drafted by Maltese MEP Roberta Metsola, her office told Newsbook.com.mt that there is an across-the-board agreement on this document among the various members of the EPP which come from all member states including ‘difficult’ States like Hungary, Poland, Germany and Sweden.

Main Features

The main points of the agreement are:

– A new framework for the fair sharing of responsibility between all Member States based on meaningful solidarity that ensures Malta, Italy and Greece are not left alone.

– Destroying people trafficking and smuggling networks.

– Returning those people who are not eligible for protection back to their home countries safely.

– Securing our external borders with faster deployment of 10,000 border guards.

– Ensuring no one dies at sea. Underlining that this is a global solution and all safe ports on both sides of the Mediterranean have responsibility for disembarkation.

– Creating legal paths for those who are required to work in Europe and for those in need of protection to seek asylum even outside of Europe, meaning they will not have to get on boats and risk their lives.

– Addressing root causes of migration by investing in Africa, but ensuring this is linked to cooperation in migration issues.

No time to waste

MEP Metsola said that “56 migrants have been saved in the Mediterranean and are now on a State-chartered Maltese ship. Their lives and immediate health are not at risk. It is a temporary measure. It is not an answer. We need permanent instruments”. She invited Prime Minister Abela to put aside partisan politics and back the fresh plan that would see a new EU framework for responsibility-sharing.

“There is no time to waste. We got this through the EPP now we need the Member States to respond and our Government to step up its efforts on these lines. We cannot afford to have four Labour MEPs voting three different ways on these crucial issues and we cannot afford our diplomatic negotiations besmirched by unanswered reports of privately contracted returns to Libya. In the European Parliament, I am proud to have led the negotiations on behalf of the EPP. In record time, we have now found a way forward that shows agreement is possible on migration across the EU. Our plan is backed by MEPs from across the EU,” said the EPP MEP Metsola.  

We need the government to back the plan – Metsola

Rooted in principle, Metsaola added that the proposed framework is fair with those who need protection, firm with those who do not and harsh with those exploiting the vulnerable. She added that now countries have pragmatic, achievable, Europe-wide solutions on the table. “

“Now we need Europe to respond and our Government to back it,” concluded MEP Metsola.