Asylum reform: EU leaders must not drag their feet on new Dublin rules
Council progress on the revamp of the Dublin system to ensure a fair and responsible EU asylum system should not be further postponed, says Parliament’s lead MEP Cecilia Wikström. Ahead of the European Council, she also warns that Parliament will not sign off on any reform that does not change the situation on the ground.
Parliament’s lead MEP on the Dublin reform, Cecilia Wikstrom (ALDE, SE) said:
“President Tusk’s recent meddling in the legislative process on the Dublin regulation is clearly unhelpful and deeply damaging to the legislative process, as well as to the inter-institutional relations between the European Parliament and EU governments in the Council.
– His comments, that he would propose a way forward on the Dublin reforms if European leaders cannot agree on a position by June 2018, are arrogant and disrespectful to the European Commission, which has already put forward a proposal on Dublin reforms, as well as to the European Parliament, which has recently adopted a mandate for negotiations by a large majority.
– It is understandable that member states would want to try and find a consensus on such an important issue, but it is equally clear from the last 18 months of fruitless debate in the European Council that such a unanimous position will never be possible to reach, since a small number of member states are determined to obstruct any form of constructive reforms of the Dublin regulation.
– European leaders need to stop meddling in and blocking the legislative process on the Dublin regulation. They need to give a clear mandate to Justice and Home Affairs ministers to proceed with the legislative work as required under the treaty, in order to find a position with a broad majority that can then be negotiated with the European Parliament as co-legislator. Dragging out talks in the European Council on the Dublin regulation until June 2018 leaves almost no time for negotiations between the co-legislators before the next European Parliament elections.
– The European Parliament will only sign off on reforms of the Dublin regulation that change the situation on the ground and allow us to take back control over the failed asylum system. We will not repeat the errors of the past and sign off on a watered-down compromise, which is guaranteed to fail again on first contact with reality. Any new Dublin system must include an automatic relocation system, with the full participation of all member states, as well as fostering true solidarity between all member states”, Mrs Wikström ends.
A broad majority of MEPs endorsed Parliament’s negotiation mandate on Dublin on 16 November, calling for a mandatory relocation of asylum seekers to ensure that they are fairly distributed among member states and that the system will work on the ground.
Member states have still not agreed on a common position, but hope to be able to do so during the first half of 2018, after which the inter-institutional talks to reach a final compromise could begin.
For mor information, please contact:
Linda Aziz, Head of Press of Cecilia Wikström
+32 486 94 76 82