We‘ve received an internal document from the EU-Commission which summarizes the first meeting of the Solidarity Platform on the Declaration on a Voluntary Solidarity Mechanism (Solidarity Platform ‘Pact’). The meeting took place on Monday, 27 June and included representatives from EU Member States, Schengen Associated States, EU Agencies (EUAA, FRONTEX), and the Council General Secretariat.
The Solidarity Platform ‘Pact’ aims at establishing a platform and voluntary mechanism by which aylum seekers should be relocated from European states at the EU‘s external border (the „MED5 countries“) to other European states.
The stated objective is to reach the aim of „10 000 relocations and to rapidly clarify the other forms of contributions, as well as to identify the most efficient way to operationalize the voluntary solidarity mechanism.“
According to the French EU presidency 8 300 relocation pledges had been announced by that point, while those pledges vary widely between the states which participated in the meeting. The document then summarizes the „state of play on solidarity pledges and other type of contribution“ for each country.
Germany and France pledged for 3 500 and 3 000 relocations respectively, followed by smaller pledges from several countries.
The so-called „MED5 countries“ on the EU‘s external borders expressed their „appreciation for solidarity shown by the EU Members“.
No pledge have been made by Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, Iceland, Finnland, Denmark, Slovakia, Slovenia, Liechtenstein, Poland, Denmark, Cyprus, Spain, Hungary and Austria. These countries refer to different reasons why they do not take part in the relocation plans:
- Slovakia, Slovenia, Liechtenstein and Poland refer to their „overstreched“ reception management systems due to the war in Ukraine and, in the case of Spain, due to „migratory pressures“ from African countries.
- Poland, Greece and Denmark stressed their concern, that a voluntary solidarity mechnaism might „serve as a factor in attracting irregular migration“, reiterating the widespread „pull-factor“ narrative.
- Austria claims „it is not in a position“ to support the relocation.
- Hungary is not a signatory of the declaration on the Voluntary Solidarity Mechanism and reiterated its position of already „providing support with border measures and returns to the Western Balkan countries“.
For more details you can find the document here.