Missions by French and German officials to Italian centers, as well as further German checks have been announced in the coming days in the "first concrete step" towards a European migrant relocation system, the Italian interior ministry has announced.
The "first concrete step" has been taken for the implementation of the political declaration approved on June 10 in Luxembourg by the Home Affairs Council, which provides for the annual relocation of about 10,000 migrants, mainly selected among people rescued at sea who have disembarked in member States of first entry of the European Union.
French officials visited the CARA reception center in Bari, from July 28 until August 2, to verify the composition of a first group of migrants who will be relocated to France, the Italian interior ministry said on Friday, August 5.
German mission to start in August
Meanwhile, German authorities said they are ready for a similar mission in August, the ministry added.
Among the 18 member States (Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, the Czech Republic, Romania and Spain) and the three associates of the European Union (Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein) who shared the political statement on June 10, France and Germany have already followed up on their commitment with the formalization of a first package of relocations that affects migrants who have already landed in Italy.
A "platform" has thus been activated, set up by the European Commission, through which member States and EU associates confirm their commitment for the relocation of migrants.
EU has taken 'right path,' says Interior Minister Lamorgese
Italian Interior Minister Luciana Lamorgese hailed the progress in the implementation of a relocation system. "I am convinced that the European Union has taken the right path to deal with migratory and humanitarian challenges, as shown over the past few months also by the shared and supportive response given to the emergency caused by the armed conflict in Ukraine, which led to the movement of millions of refugees in Europe."
The minister went on to say that the "political declaration approved last June 10 by the European Home Affairs Council represents a historic point for the Union because, for the first time, the principle of solidarity in the management of migration flows at the external borders of the EU was shared by a vast majority of member States."
"This result could be reached thanks to the commitment of the French presidency and of the Commission that welcomed in full the proposals advanced by Italy and within the Med5 group - also including Cyprus, Greece, Malta and Spain - thus leading to a key step forward in the difficult task of unlocking negotiations on the European Pact on Migration and Asylum," she added.
The political declaration of June 10, concluded Lamorgese, "marks the beginning of a path aimed at establishing the right balance between responsibility and solidarity in the shared management of migration flows."