EU Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos | Photo: EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ
EU Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos | Photo: EPA/STEPHANIE LECOCQ

The European Commission has decided to give up on the redistribution of obligatory migrant quotas in order to get past a stalemate on the reform of the Common European Asylum System.

The EU's executive is putting pressure on member states and the Parliament to adopt at least five proposals - on which there has been broad political agreement for months - of the seven in the package in early 2019. It is a ''bridge'' solution ahead of a finalization of the whole, according to Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos, who believes that an agreement can be achieved. 

In order for this to become possible, Brussels has decided it is necessary to leave behind debate on the redistribution of obligatory refugee quotas, which has been a divisive point for over two and a half years. The Greek commissioner said that it was time to go forward and that solidarity ''can arrive in different forms'' but that it had to come from all. 

Avramopoulos noted that there may be a sort of ''parachute'' introduced for times of high levels of migration pressure. The measure would be a safety net ensuring support to countries affected if there were not to be enough voluntary commitments from member states. He said that it was necessary to be ''pragmatic'' in order to get the other measures approved. 

Awaiting reaction on proposals

The five proposals ready to be adopted are the Qualification Regulation, the Reception Conditions Directive, the European Asylum Agency Regulation, the Eurodac Regulation, and the Union Resettlement Framework Regulation. It is not clear whether the initiatives will be approved by all member states. An initial reaction is expected from the 28-member ambassadors' meeting on Wednesday. The European Parliament may instead give its view in next week's plenary session.

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