The sudden influx of more than a million migrants — many aiming for Germany — caused many European countries to close their borders — against the rules of the Schengen Agreement, which calls for open borders within member states.
More importantly, the sheer volume of migrants spreading across Europe unchecked, exposed deep flaws in the security of the outer borders of Schengen and the lack of capability to process the migrants. Many arrived in Germany without having been first processed in the country of arrival — which goes against the principle of the Dublin rules which state that all must be processed for asylum purposes wherever the first arrive.
Germany has been calling on EU member states to take back migrants from Germany who originally arrived in their country — but many are refusing to impose the Dublin rules.
According to figures obtained by Die Linke form the German Ministry of the Interior, between the beginning of 2016 and the end of March 2017, the federal government has made 72,321 so-called takeover requests to other EU countries. However, only 5,321 (7.3 percent) were returned.
The European Commission has been pressing EU member states to reimpose the Dublin rules and also to accept a quota of migrants from Italy and Greece, but has met with resistance from some member states on both counts.
The Commission agreed, September 2015, to relocate 160,000 migrants from Greece and Italy to other EU member states, according to a quota system, based on population and GDP, among other measures. Although the figure was revised downwards, to 98,255, only 20,327 have so far been relocated (June 2) under the scheme.
The Commission has called on Hungary and Poland — who, like Slovakia are refusing to take part in the scheme — or start pledging and relocating immediately, the Czech Republic to restart relocation without delay and Austria, which has now started pledging from Italy, to start pledging from Greece.