PES ministers urge progress on Migration and Asylum Pact based on shared responsibility and solidarity

08/10/2021

The EU must urgently move forwards on the New Pact on Migration and Asylum, ministers from the Party of European Socialists said yesterday.

Progressive home affairs ministers convened with European Commissioner Ylva Johansson ahead of the Justice and Home Affairs Council today, to exchange on migration and asylum, and Schengen governance.

Meeting Chair, Spanish Minister of the Interior Fernando Grande-Marlaska, said:

“Commissioner Johansson presented the Pact proposals over a year ago.

“The continued pressure in the Mediterranean, on the Canary Islands, the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and the dire situation on the border of Belarus have made it clear that the EU must urgently move forwards with a Pact based on the principle of shared responsibility and solidarity.

“We saw good progress under the Portuguese Presidency thanks to the hard work of Minister Cabrita. We want the Slovenian Presidency to show the same determination. We need strong efforts to reach an agreement on a true solidarity mechanism and Search and Rescue and safe disembarkation. External dimension efforts also need to be strengthened.”

The meeting stressed the importance of safe and legal pathways built on strong and effective cooperation with partner countries. Ministers welcomed the renewed EU action plan against migrant smuggling presented last week by Commissioner Johansson. It will help to prevent organised exploitation of migrants and reduce irregular migration. Ministers also commended resettlement efforts and the Talent Partnerships and Team Europe Initiatives also put forward by Commissioner Johansson.

Ministers also exchanged on Schengen - one of the EU's most important achievements. Ministers emphasised the need to implement a new strategy for Schengen that strengthens the preparation for future challenges around security and preserves Schengen and its achievements.

The meeting was attended by:

  • Fernando Grande-Marlaska, Minister for Home Affairs, Spain
  • Ylva Johansson, EU Commissioner for Home Affairs, European Commission
  • Patricia Gaspar, State Secretary for Home Affairs, Portugal
  • Morgan Johansson, Minister for Justice and Migration, Sweden
  • Birgit Sippel, MEP and Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) coordinator, S&D Group
  • Yonnec Polet, PES Deputy Secretary General