Pittella: Schulz and Gentiloni are right – all EU members must show solidarity on migration

Pittella: Schulz and Gentiloni are right – all EU Members must show solidarity on migration

Speaking following the Commission decision to move ahead with infringement proceedings against states that refuse to accept the relocation of refugees and ahead of a meeting between SDP Candidate for Chancellor Martin Schulz and Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni, S&D Group President Gianni Pittella said:

“Italy has seen a constant increase in the number of people arriving across the Mediterranean in recent years. Hundreds of thousands are waiting in reception centres or being housed by local authorities, who are stretched to their limits. This situation cannot continue – one state cannot face the brunt of this situation alone. A legal binding decision has been taken on the relocation of refugees and it is outrageous that certain national governments still refuse to accept this. The Commission has a duty to ensure that all countries meet their responsibilities.

“It is almost five years since the scale of this problem became apparent and yet we are no closer to having a strategy in place to deal with it.

“We are a continent of 500 million people and one of the richest regions of the planet, yet our failure to organise effectively turns manageable issues into crises. We cannot wait until something is back on the front pages before acting. It is essential to finally apply the relocation mechanism to all third country nationalities. The Dublin System must be revised and updated to reflect the current situation and, in the long run, Europe should set up corridors for legal migration and  increase its commitment to stabilise Libya and further invest in Africa in order to tackle the causes of these increasing migratory flows.”