Monday, September 14, 2015

MIGRANT CRISIS - European Union Ambassodor

"Will EU proposal relieve pressure on those bearing the brunt of the migrant crisis?" PBS NewsHour 9/9/2015


SUMMARY:  European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker announced new plans to require member states to absorb a share of 160,000 asylum seekers flocking to Italy, Greece and Hungary.  European Union Ambassador David O'Sullivan joins Gwen Ifill to discuss the announced proposal.

GWEN IFILL (NewsHour):  Joining us now to talk about that push and pull, and the announced proposal today to help remedy the crisis, is the European Union’s ambassador to the United States, David O’Sullivan.


DAVID O’SULLIVAN, European Union Ambassador to the United States:  Thank you.

GWEN IFILL:  So let’s talk about the proposal put forth today to take — to accept 160,000 of these migrants and refugees and spread them somehow among different countries in the E.U.  How feasible is that?

DAVID O’SULLIVAN:  I think it’s eminently feasible.

I mean, you need to understand, of course, that this is basically a proposal designed to relieve the immediate pressure on the front-line countries in Europe who’ve had to bear the brunt of the increased wave of refugees, particularly Italy and Greece coming from the Mediterranean, and now Hungary through the route of the Western Balkans.

It’s clear that these countries, enormous efforts though they have made — and the Italians and Greek people have been extremely generous in their reaction — it is more that they can cope with, so we do need a redistribution of people already on European soil across all of our member states, so the burden can be shared more equitably.

But this is not the only action which is being proposed, of course.  We’re also looking at stepping up action across the borders.  We are the largest donor of humanitarian assistance to the refugees in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon.

But, as your report has shown, the system there is at breaking point, and this is part of the push that the international community will also need to address.

GWEN IFILL:  A lot at the breaking point, including emotions.


GWEN IFILL:  I want to talk about the 160,000, though, because you’re saying that is a baseline, that’s where you begin, not where you necessarily end.

And you’re talking about enforcing by putting in place, mandating quotas, certain countries have to accept a certain amount.  How do you enforce that?

No comments: