EU-Turkey deal: a bitter 1st anniversary

Caritas International EU-Turkey deal: a bitter 1st anniversary
16/03/2017

Caritas Europa finds it shameful how the EU-Turkey deal has left thousands of people stranded in inhumane and degrading conditions in Greece, inevitably resulting in others taking more dangerous routes to seek protection in the EU.

Thousands of people share the fate of this Iraqi family and find themselves in limbo in Greece. Caritas Europa implores EU Member States’ governments to find durable solutions for these people, who are being denied international protection in Europe. The EU-Turkey deal is not a solution, since it fails to respect basic human rights and shifts the governments’ responsibilities under humanitarian and international law back to countries of origin and of transit. Therefore, such a bilateral deal should by no means be replicated. Instead, Caritas Europa calls on EU Member State governments to:

  • Live up to their commitments to relocate the remaining 92,454 persons out of the 106,000 pledged and continue with the resettlement efforts regarding the 8,082 persons out of the 22,504 pledged;
  • Prioritise respect for human dignity at the core of all bilateral agreements;
  • Provide for fair and transparent asylum procedures and dignified reception conditions;
  • Open more safe and legal ways to come to Europe (such as via resettlement, humanitarian corridors, humanitarian visas or family reunification);
  • Never use official development aid as a tool to stem migration flows. Instead, this aid should be used to tackle poverty in non-EU countries, as enshrined in the Lisbon Treaty (Art. 208).

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