EU fails to address provision for migrants at Brussels summit

EU leaders meeting in Brussels have agreed an action plan as part of its efforts to gain cooperation on limiting the number of migrants arriving in Europe.

Natalia Alonso, Head of Oxfam's EU Office, said: "Once again the European Union has failed to agree how to properly help people fleeing conflict and poverty in order to seek sanctuary inside Europe. Instead it has shifted the focus to outside its borders by pursuing policies based on exclusion rather than safety and protection.

"European countries should be extending a helping hand by respecting people’s rights and meeting their humanitarian needs in a dignified way. Thankfully, there are still voices in Europe calling for member states to accept their fair share of refugees. European Union members need to put the current numbers of migrant arrivals in perspective - when they represent a tenth of a percent (0.1%) of the EU population this issue can hardly be described as a crisis for Europe. A genuinely united Europe has plenty of resources, enough to help - and we believe the public will to do so, too.

"Oxfam reiterates that the EU has a collective responsibility to guarantee - regardless of where migrants come from and where they cross the border - that there is sufficient capacity to receive, register, house and process all arrivals. The EU must ensure that migrants' basic needs are met and their rights respected, including the right to claim asylum."

Contact information: 

Attila Kulcsar | Mobile: +447471 142974

For updates, please follow @Oxfam or @OxfamEU.

The public can support Oxfam's response to the Syria crisis.