Tista’ taqra bil-
According to Roberta Metsola, newly elected to the European Parliament, obtaining the support of a majority of MEPs for an “effective and compassionate policy which respects the lives of all those who embark on a difficult journey for a better life” could well be the easiest part.
But while she pledged to do everything possible to make it happen in response to a question from Newsbook.com.mtthe MEP stressed that the Parliament would then have to convince both the European Commission and the Member States to follow suit.
The EP has long called for a reform of EU asylum and migration rules, an issue close to the heart of Metsola’s predecessor, the late David Sassoli.
Sassoli had been outspoken about the need to protect the rights of migrants and refugees above all – and was also strongly in favor of a reform that Malta has long been calling for: the redistribution of asylum seekers in the EU.
“Anyone who lands in a European country arrives in Europe. The redistribution of asylum seekers should be done in a regulated manner and no longer on an ad hoc and voluntary basis,” Sassoli argued.
Metsola’s position is based on similar grounds, although she points out that discussions in the EP have been heated and many more discussions are likely on issues such as solidarity between member states and the repatriation of asylum seekers. rejected asylum.
But ultimately, she believes securing a parliamentary majority in favor of compassionate and effective politics is an achievable goal.
Parliament’s responsibility – and Metsola’s too, naturally – would then be to persuade the other EU institutions to agree.
The Maltese representatives of each – Commissioner Helena Dalli and ministers involved in the relevant Council meetings – can be expected to support such a position.
But Metsola is under no illusions that getting through these institutions would be an easy task. While Member States on the periphery of the EU would probably agree – if only for the solidarity component which would reduce the number of asylum seekers for which they would be responsible – other countries did not been enthusiastic about welcoming more people seeking safety and a better life in Europe.
“So far, successes in this area have been rare,” she acknowledges.
“But I will do my utmost to ensure that we can finally break this deadlock…this issue is an open wound that the EU has felt for decades.”
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