Remarks by Commissioner Avramopoulos after the G6 meeting with Interior Ministers in Moritzburg

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2 Jun 2015
  • Αβραμόπουλος Avramopoulos
  • Αβραμόπουλος Avramopoulos
  • Αβραμόπουλος Avramopoulos
  • Αβραμόπουλος Avramopoulos

I am very pleased with the results of our discussions here in Moritzburg. We focused on the pressing migration and security challenges, which we all currently face.

I believe that we made another important step toward developing a joint European approach on migration. 

Our intense discussions, which focused on the actions included in the European Agenda on Migration and on the first implementation package presented by the Commission last week, identified many points of convergence as well as points that require further discussion. 

Our priorities are clear and coherent. 

We are reinforcing our joint action against smugglers 

We are empowering the meaning of the term solidarity, by helping Member States that stand in the first line of the crisis 

We support a European policy of return for those economic irregular migrants that have no right to stay in the Union. 

We are determined to back programs like Triton and Poseidon that save lives.

We seek to address the root causes of migration as well as build multi-purpose centres in third countries like the one in Niger.

The meeting showed a clear agreement on the need for solidarity and at the same time on the importance to respect rules and avoid abuses. The point that requires further discussion is the resettlement and relocation schemes and the distribution key used to determine the extent of responsibility-sharing for each Member State.

I would like to point out that the proposed resettlement of 20.000 refugees from third countries and the relocation of 40.000 asylum seekers throughout the EU is quite reasonable, especially when we consider that just in the last few days over 6.000 migrants arrived in the EU.

So when we discuss migration issues, we must not lose sight of the bigger picture. 

I hope that in two weeks from now, at the Home Affairs Council in Luxembourg, we will be able to make another step toward a genuine European policy on migration. 

To move fast, to move united, to produce results!

This is what we have to do. 

Regarding security, fighting terrorism remains a priority for all of us including the United States who joined yesterday evening.

For the EU, the European Agenda on Security should be the basis for dealing with terrorism, organised crime and cyber security.

We all agree that intensifying our common efforts will be essential to ensure the safety of our citizens.

The Internet has become a new recruiting ground for terrorists groups and a channel that spreads their extremist views. 

Enhancing our counter terrorist efforts online is, therefore, crucial.

I explained to the Ministers my intention to develop cooperation with the Internet industry, in order to reduce accessibility to terrorist material and propaganda and also to fight cybercrime.

Regarding cybercrime, strong EU-US relations offer a solid political framework for concrete action.

Tomorrow in Riga, at the dedicated EU-US meeting, I will have the opportunity to further discuss with my American counterparts the strengthening of cooperation on security and other issues of common concern.

At the end, let me say a few words on the French-German Statement.

We fully welcome France's and Germany's support of the proposals presented by us in the European Agenda on Migration.

Indeed, the Agenda includes a set of measures which, as highlighted by France and Germany, are designed to ensure a better sharing of responsibility and solidarity within the UE to manage the exceptional increase of the flow of migrants. We are committed to implement all measures presented in the package.

As I have said before, we are of course willing to discuss with Member States the modalities of implementation of the mechanisms to ensure a fair distribution of asylum seekers within the European union.

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