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    Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban addresses news conferece with British Prime Minister David Cameron (not pictured) in Budapest, Hungary January 7, 2016.

    Hungary Slams 'Jaw Dropping' EU Plans to Solve Migrant Crisis

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    The spokesman for the Hungarian Government, Zoltan Kovacs has said the latest proposals to resolve the European migrant crisis by the European Commission "made our jaws drop" and said movements across the West Balkans had been stopped by the actions of individual countries, rather than by the EU.

    The European Commission, June 7, introduced the "New Migration Partnership Framework" designed to forge alliances with non-EU countries to manage migration, reform the blue card system, allowing skilled non-EU workers the right to live and work in the EU, as well as "the integration of third-country nationals and their economic and social contribution to the EU." 

    The Commission said:

    "Migratory pressure is the 'new normal' both for the EU and for partner countries and is part of a broader global displacement crisis."

    Kovacs said in his blog: "That approach is fundamentally misguided, has little if any popular support and, as the Orban Government has been saying for months, sends the wrong message. Hungary opposes in no uncertain terms any plan that calls for a compulsory resettlement quota."

    ​Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto said: "Both migrants and people traffickers interpret such proposals as an invitation. Accordingly, Hungary rejects the European Commission's proposal in the strongest possible terms."

    Concrete Results

    European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said: "To stop the unacceptable loss of life in the Mediterranean Sea and bring order into migratory flows, we need to rethink how the EU and its Member States join efforts to work together with third countries. We will also work on an ambitious External Investment Plan to help create opportunities and tackle the root causes of migration. Without concrete results from our partners in managing migration better, we should collectively be ready to adapt our engagement and financial aid." 

    Kovacs told journalists in Brussels that the West Balkan route — the route favored by migrants to cross from Turkey, via Greece, Macedonia, Albania, Bulgaria and Serbia and into Hungary — had largely been closed by the actions of individual countries, rather than because of any action by the EU.

    "Engaging with Macedonia and Serbia was more effective than the whole EU approach. The effective mechanisms of handling the crisis come not so from the joint European, or more European answer, but from the efforts of member states," Kovacs said. 

    In his blog, he repeated calls for the adoption of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's so-called Schengen 2.0, under which migrants would be processed in hotspots outside of the EU and the Schengen borders would be strengthened.

    Related:

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    Tags:
    open border, Schengen area, migrant crisis, humanitarian crisis, refugees, EU-Turkey migrant deal, European Parliament, European Council, European Union, Péter Szijjártó, Frans Timmermans, Viktor Orban, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Italy, Hungary, Europe, Turkey
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