Thursday, 6 October 2016

Libya rejects EU-proposed migrant camp on its soil

Libya has rejected a European Union proposal to
build a migrant camp on its soil to control
migration through the Mediterranean.

The Libyan Foreign Affairs Minister Mohamad
Taher Siala expressed their position on the
matter at the Organization for Security and Co-
operation in Europe meeting in Vienna on
Thursday.
“Such a project would mean that the European
Union is refusing to assume its responsibilities
and placing it on our shoulders,” he said.
He also pointed out to the civil war in Libya
which he believes makes the proposal “far from
the realities on the ground”.
Several European Union countries, including
Austria and Hungary, have been pushing for EU
deals with North African countries to send back
rejected asylum-seekers as a way of dealing with
the worst migration crisis since 1945.
Hungary’s populist Prime Minister Viktor Orban
recently said the EU should build “a large
refugee city” on the Libyan coast to process
asylum claims of migrants outside the EU.
A growing number of people are attempting the
treacherous sea journey from Libya or Egypt,
after the closure of the Balkan migrant trail
route leading from Greece to western Europe.
More than 140,000 have made the journey to
Italy on overcrowded boats since the start of this
year, latest figures show.
Over 3,500 migrants have drowned in the
Mediterranean in 2016 so far.
In March, the bloc signed a landmark agreement
with Turkey to curb the flow toward Greece, but
the deal looks shaky after a coup attempt in
July.