This week European Commission put forward a package of ‘new’ proposals footed with 200 million euro to address problems of migration from North Africa.
“It is essential that we all do more, all, meaning all together… and to suggest concrete actions that can be done and that can bring some positive results with an envelope of €200 million for 2017 to support these concrete actions.” – said Federica Mogherini, the EU top diplomat explaining her continuous efforts to save lives of migrants crossing Mediterranean.
Saving lives remains major objective of the proposal, protecting migrants, increasing resettlement and promoting assisted voluntary returns, by supporting UNHCR work with the Libyan authorities to address the situation of persons in need of international protection, and improving the situation of migrants in Libya, expanding its assisted voluntary returns programme from Libya to countries of origin.
Key objectives of the proposals include reducing the number of crossings and saving lives by enhancing ongoing support, including through EUNAVFOR Operation Sophia, to the Libyan Coast Guard and Navy, and also through expanding the training activities through an immediate €1 million addition to the Seahorse programme and a grant of €2.2 million under the Regional Development and Protection Programme in North Africa and establishing a Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre.
“The real long-term solution lies in two difficult things to achieve but on which we are working daily. On one side, peace and stability in Libya … And, on the other side, the real solution comes with the economic development of Africa…”
The refusal of the US President Trump to continue the immigration policy of his predecessor,welcoming refugees and migrants, will considerably increase the pressure on Europe as the ultimate destination for migrant flows from Africa and Middle East.