European Parliament President: All EU States Must Implement Procedures to Prevent Migrants from ‘Shopping for Asylum Status’

Thursday, June 8th, 2017
Last Update: 13:01

The European Parliament President, Antonio Tajani, announced to reporters that it is time the EU member states come together to implement asylum procedures aimed at stopping asylum seekers from “shopping for asylum status.”

Tajani made several statements to reporters on Wednesday saying that the refugees who were relocated to European countries as part of the EU resettlement program have moved within the EU to more prosperous countries such as Germany or Sweden.

“At the moment the rules are not properly harmonized…The rules have to be the same for everybody. Otherwise we will end up with people shopping for asylum status, which undermines our credibility,” he said.

For example, Latvia took in 380 refugees as part of the relocation program but 313 of them have already moved to either Sweden or Germany. Issues such as low wages, language barriers and few jobs available motivate the asylum seekers to pick up their belongings and search other EU countries for asylum status where they will find more opportunities.

Greece is currently accommodating over 60,000 migrants since many EU states have closed their borders, bottlenecking the refugees and asylum seekers on both the eastern Aegean islands and mainland of the country. While Greece’s migrant registration centers on the Aegean islands are packed far beyond their capacity hosting 14,018 people, the vast majority of them have applied for asylum even though most of them are not eligible. All the same, they remain in Greece hoping that they will be able to cross to central and northern Europe illegally.

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