The Council of Ministers of the European Union met today in Luxembourg.
Greece was represented by the Minister of Migration & Asylum, Mr. Notis Mitarachi, who stated the following before the meeting: "Today at the Council of Ministers of Interior, I will inform my counterparts about the Turkish provocation at the border and the possible, future effort to instrumentalize migration. That is why it is important for us to make progress on border security regulations, such as the Schengen Regulation. Similarly, it is very important for us today to have a political statement from the Council on the issue of solidarity with the first host countries, with the relocation of asylum seekers and refugees. For the first time, Europe is officially putting the issue of solidarity on the table."
The Council discussed three key issues related to border protection and solidarity in migration, on which overall positive steps have been taken.
After the meeting, Mr. Mitarachi made the following statement:
"Today we have made significant progress towards Greece's goals in tackling the migration crisis.
We approved the proposal for the new Schengen Borders Code, which recognizes the need for effective protection of the EU borders, emphasizing deterrents and raising the issue of instrumentalization.
Advances in Screening & Eurodac Regulations further enhance the security of our external borders. The Council statement on the establishment of a transitional solidarity mechanism gives direct support to the front-line states with relocation and proposes the establishment of a permanent mechanism. For the first time, Europe recognizes the need to create a permanent mechanism of solidarity, deviating from the logic of the Dublin Regulation.
Finally, in the context of reviewing the role of FRONTEX, I stressed the need to further strengthen the Organization in order to effectively protect our common borders and underlined the challenges we face from Turkey's counterproductive and provocative rhetoric and the possibility of new hybrid threats".