NEWS

EU works on deal to deport migrants

Brussels – The European Commission is planning to forge agreements with Turkey, Albania, Algeria and China for the return of illegal immigrants from those countries, in a further effort to stem the tide of illegal immigration swelling over Europe. This is also aimed at curbing the rise of a European extreme right. The issue was discussed at the meeting of EU ministers of interior and justice at Luxembourg yesterday. A full proposal is to be tabled by the end of November. Preparations for a common framework for all 15 EU members – aimed at setting up a mechanism that will allow the return of migrants to the country from which they entered the European Union – are already at an advanced stage. Without such a framework, the repatriation of migrants is an exceptionally complicated affair, usually running up against the flat refusal of these countries to take them in. Turkey, for example, is one of the countries through which citizens of other countries pass before entering the EU illegally. Greece has tried to solve the problem by signing bilateral agreements for the return of migrants, with debatable effectiveness. A collective agreement between the 15 and each of the above-mentioned countries will mean that the Commission, and not each member’s capital, will undertake the difficult task of persuading those countries to take back migrants. Participants at Tuesday’s meeting also discussed whether the cost of caring for detained migrants will be paid by the country in which they are detained or by the one from which they entered the EU.