German Chancellor Angela Merkel laid out a six-point plan this week to prevent a future migrant crisis, including a common asylum system across all European Union (EU) member-states.
The German leader, who recently formed a new coalition months after last September’s election, released her six-point plan to stop another migrant crisis after many held her responsible for creating the first one in 2015.
The first point involves support for the EU-Turkey migrant deal, which saw the political bloc give billions to Turkey and a promise of visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens, in exchange for keeping migrants from crossing the Aegean Sea to Greece.
“I know that the EU-Turkey agreement has many opponents. But I will defend it,” Merkel said.
Merkel also declared that Germany and other countries should pour more funding into United Nations programmes like the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNCHR).
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The causes of migration were another major topic raised by the Chancellor with Merkel arguing that more should be done to condemn regimes like that of Syrian president Bashar Assad, and highlighting steps to forge agreements with African countries to prevent further migration.
A strong EU external border is something that has been advocated by Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán and others since 2015, and Merkel did voice her support for increased security on the political bloc’s shared border.
“We need such control because we have had to experience that among so many peaceful and irreproachable refugees there were also Islamist terrorists,” Merkel said — using the opportunity to and call for the creation of a joint EU border security force.
Hungary’s Orbán Tells Germany: ‘You Asked for Muslim Invaders, We Did Not’ https://t.co/CQLWkcJMgO
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Most significantly, she called for a common EU asylum system, a policy very much opposed by Prime Minister Orbán, who has labelled it an “institutionalisation of mass migration”. Merkel said she expected an agreement on the matter by June of this year.
In her final point, Merkel argued that any migrants who received resident status must be integrated as soon as possible and that the German federal government would support language classes and daycare for children, and help regions with funding such programmes.