An official request by Sweden to the European Union (EU) to have her surplus of migrants redistributed around the continent has been turned down.
Sweden has long contended her European neighbours have not been doing their fair share in the migrant crisis, but now an official move to force them into taking migrants has failed, after the EU rejected their request.
The power bloc has a mechanism to move some 54,000 migrants this year, but in light of the Balkan and Visegrad nations in South-East and Central Europe blocking the migrants in Greece, the quota is to be largely used up there, reports Radio Sweden.
Rather than moving them around Europe, tens of thousands of migrants will be moved en masse from Greece back to Turkey. The move would come under a deal being negotiated at the EU migrant crisis conference, yet even that now seems uncertain.
Leaked documents coming out of the summit on Thursday evening suggested the number of spaces for relocation was being cut back significantly.
— Maximilian Hofmann (@maxhofmann) March 17, 2016
Limited numbers of migrants have already been moved under the scheme. A military plane of 19 Eritreans flew from Italy to Sweden last year, an event fêted by EU officials and conducted with all pomp and ceremony at Rome’s Ciampino airport.
The exercise later collapsed in a shambles after it was revealed to be nothing more than an EU public relations stunt — one in which the majority of the moved migrants absconded.
The original plan had been to move 33 migrants by plane to Sweden, but 14 of them vanished into Italy, forcing the EU to keep the remainder under “lock and key” until their big day.
The news that Europe won’t be sharing Sweden’s migrant burden will come as a blow to Prime Minister Stephen Löfven, who has been calling on his neighbours and colleagues in the EU to take a more Swedish approach to mass migration since the crisis began.
Breitbart London has reported that at times his insistence has even crossed the threshold into cross words. Mr. Löfven has called those countries not taking part in the EU redistribution programme “beneath contempt”.
Despite his enthusiasm, the programme Mr. Löfven was depending on has rejected his requests for assistance.