Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said his “personal initiative” would see “generous” European Union quotas to bring in refugees from crisis-hit regions and spread them around the continent.
The aim is to endorse a plan to share 120,000 refugees arriving in Italy and debt-laden Greece, and perhaps Hungary, even though Budapest is refusing to take part in this kind of arrangement. While the leaders are expected to sign off on any proposals agreed by justice ministers, they will also discuss more long-term measures. Also taken into account were a country’s unemployment rate and its number of spontaneous asylum applications and resettled refugees per 1 million inhabitants in the last five years.
“The speed with which the European Parliament is giving its opinion is obviously down to the extreme urgency”, a spokesman for the office of parliament head Martin Schulz said.
At the end of June 2015, around 592 000 people were the subject of an application for asylum protection in the European Union still under consideration by the responsible national authority.
Championed by Germany, which is bearing the brunt of the migrant crisis, the new plan would distribute asylum seekers proportionately across states.
This makes us very different from countries such as Germany, Croatia and Austria, which are frantically reimposing border controls to stem the flood of people entering their countries. Merkel had said in recent weeks that there was no upper limit to the amount of refugees Germany could accept because the right to asylum is written into the country’s Basic Law, or constitution.
The majority of these asylum seekers are Syrians who are trying to flee a civil war that has claimed more than 250,000 lives since 2011 and resulted in one of the largest refugee exoduses since the Second World War.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Monday that the “consultations will be important, but they will not lead to the problem we have being set aside”.
A Syrian asylum seeker living in a German camp for refugees has said he fought and killed for Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL).
“We cannot register and accommodate these people any longer”, said Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanović Friday, adding “They will get food, water and medical help, and then they can move on”.
Finland is experiencing its biggest influx of refugees since the Russian Revolution with hundreds of migrants arriving each day via Sweden, but their presence is angering some in the recession-hit country.