The European Commission has expanded on its concept of “controlled centres” for the processing of migrants disembarked in the EU, including paying 6000 euro per person to EU countries hosting such centres.
The Commission, in a July 24 statement, said that it was expanding on the concept of the controlled centres “as well as short-term measures that could be taken to improve the processing of migrants being disembarked in the EU, and giving a first outline of the possible way forward for the establishment of regional disembarkation arrangements with third countries”.
Regional disembarkation arrangements should be seen as working in concert with the development of controlled centres in the EU: together, both concepts should help ensure a truly shared regional responsibility in responding to complex migration challenges, the Commission said.
European Commissioner Avramopoulo, in charge of migration, home affairs and citizenship, said: “Now more than ever we need common, European solutions on migration. We are ready to support member states and third countries in better cooperating on disembarkation of those rescued at sea. But for this to work immediately on the ground, we need to be united – not just now, but also in the long run. We need to work towards sustainable solutions.”
To improve the orderly and effective processing of those disembarked in the European Union, EU leaders have called for the establishment of ‘controlled centres’ in the EU.
“The primary aim would be to improve the process of distinguishing between individuals in need of international protection, and irregular migrants with no right to remain in the EU, while speeding up returns,” the Commission said.
The centres would be managed by the host EU countries with full support from the EU and EU Agencies and could have a temporary or ad-hoc nature depending on the location.
The Commission listed the main features of such centres as including full operational support with disembarkation teams of European border guards, asylum experts, security screeners and return officers, and all costs covered by the EU budget; rapid, secure and effective processing that reduces the risk of secondary movements and accelerates the process to determine the status of the person concerned; and full financial support to volunteering member states to cover infrastructure and operational costs; as well as financial support to EU countries accepting transfers of those disembarked (6000 euro per person).
To test the concept, a pilot phase applying a flexible approach could be launched as soon as possible.
The Commission will also provide a central contact point to coordinate among member states taking part in solidarity efforts – as an interim measure until a fully-fledged system can be established in the context of the ongoing Common European Asylum System reforms, the statement said.
(Photo: J Owens/VOA)