Brussels/Bratislava, October 12 (TASR) – The migrant resettlement scheme can be evaluated as a failure, said Interior Minister Robert Kalinak on Wednesday.
Kalinak was speaking in response to a report drafted by the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), which evaluated the situation in the year since the scheme involving the resettlement of migrants from Greece and Italy to other EU countries came into effect.
The EASO report notes that the first resettlement of 19 asylum seekers from Italy to Sweden took place on October 9, 2015. Since then, almost 6,000 asylum seekers have been resettled from Italy and Greece to other EU-member states.
Kalinak, who participated in a discussion on the Schengen area at the European Parliament in Brussels on the same day, claimed that only a “puny number” of migrants have been relocated over the course of the year.
“Apparently, the quotas were disregarded even by countries that voted for them. So, something doesn’t add up here. We can’t handle migrants as if they were lentils … Migrants are people with their own goals in life and their own will. Ignoring this fact was a fatal mistake,” said the minister.
According to the EASO chart, bodies in Italy and Greece were “unburdened” throughout the year of 5,953 asylum seekers of the 160,000 individuals originally to be resettled. Among the countries that accepted migrants, the highest number found shelter in France (1,987), while the lowest number ended up in Slovakia (three).