Politics

 Brussels determined to impose refugee quotas

Article published on June 15, 2017
Article published on June 15, 2017

"Decisions that have been made are applicable law, even if one voted against them". With these words EU Commission President Juncker has defended the opening of infringement procedures against Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic. The three states are refusing to comply with the quota system for the distribution of refugees decided in 2015. Are sanctions justified?

Row over distribution just a sham - Heti Válasz, Hungary

The row over refugee distribution isn't really about the refugees, Heti Válasz explains:

“Hungary certainly wouldn't go to pieces if it took in the 1,294 migrants Brussels has prescribed. … And for the EU's leading member states as well as for Italy and Greece, which are demanding more solidarity, it won't make much of a difference whether the Central Europeans take in ten thousand migrants or not since within the next few months far more refugees will wash up on the coast of Sicily alone. The quota system is not a viable solution. The Commission is insisting on it because it wants to convey the impression that it is doing something about the refugees. But in reality it doesn't have any kind of plan.” (14/06/2017

The fight must be fought - Gazeta Polska Codziennie, Poland 

The conflict is about more fundamental issues, Gazeta Polska Codziennie agrees:

“The core of the controversy between the EU Commission and Poland over refugee quotas revolves around the question of the leadership of the European Union. We're facing a situation in which decisions that have no legal basis are being forced on certain member states. ... That risks setting a precedent for decisions that violate existing treaties and violate the sovereignty of individual states. ... Today the issue is migrants, but once this decision-making model has been used one time it could be applied at will in the future. Of course we can't accept that, so this conflict is well worth the trouble.” (14/06/2017

Prague's migration policy unserious - Hospodárské Noviny, Czechia 

If the Czech Republic rejects the EU's migration policy it should at least do it in an honest and consistent way, Hospodářské noviny criticises:

“We're lying up our sleeves. We don't reject the distribution quotas because we're afraid they won't work, but because we're afraid they will. ... De facto, however, we're not offering any other solution either to Europe or the refugees. ... For instance we could make a serious attempt to negotiate a permanent exemption in this area with the EU, as Denmark has done. Naturally that would entail many risks. Imagine, for example, if the Ukraine conflict escalates, the Czech Republic is flooded with hundreds of thousands of refugees, Germany closes the door and no one will help us. As things stand, however, as long as we're part of this mechanism we're obliged to respect it.” (14/06/2017

Flexible solidarity is just a scam - Dennik N, Slovakia 

The politicians in Brussels have realised that the "flexible solidarity" the Visegrád states talk of is in fact no solidarity at all, Dennik N observes:

“According to the official announcements by Slovakia, Hungary, the Czech Republic and Poland, 'flexible solidarity' means that each state contributes to solving the crisis depending on its resources. However in Brussels and other member states people aren't as dumb as the Central and Eastern European countries had hoped. They have understood that this was just a cheap ploy. … We shouldn't get upset now that Brussels is contemplating financial sanctions against us. And we certainly can't accuse the EU of lacking solidarity. Solidarity is a word we should avoid altogether.” (09/06/2017

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