Sobotka to Convene Extraordinary V4 Summit on Migrant Crisis

Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (left) and his Slovak counterpart Robert Fico at a press conference

Bratislava, January 26 (TASR) – The Czech Republic will convene an extraordinary summit of the Visegrad Four (V4: Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) in mid-February to seek solutions to the migration crisis at the European level, Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka announced during his one-day visit to Bratislava on Tuesday.

The V4 summit is scheduled to take place in Prague on February 15, just days ahead of February’s EU summit.
Sobotka met with his Slovak counterpart Robert Fico at a luncheon to discuss current issues surrounding the migration crisis. Sobotka, whose Cabinet currently presides over the V4, said that the extraordinary summit will allow the central European countries to prepare for the upcoming summit of European leaders in Brussels on February 19.
“I’d be glad to discuss at the extraordinary V4 summit the specific measures we can adopt to bolster the protection of Schengen’s borders,” said Sobotka. He added that this must feature a backup plan in case Greece and Turkey fail to protect their external border. Such a plan should “strengthen the protection of borders between Macedonia and Greece or Bulgaria and Greece in order to lay the groundwork for the regulation of the strong migration flow inbound for Europe,” said Sobotka.
This sentiment was echoed also by Prime Minister Robert Fico. “It is particularly Macedonia and Bulgaria that can play a crucial role in the protection of Schengen border (even if they are not part of Schengen),” he stressed. If Macedonia and  Bulgaria protects the their borders, “it would then be completely irrelevant whether or not Greece remains part of Schengen because it is in Schengen today, yet fails to comply with the expected tasks.”
Fico would like the Prague summit to conclude with as specific measures as possible. He emphasised that Slovakia is ready to despatch its recently created foreign police unit of 300 officers. “We want to demonstrate that there are solutions and not just endless cheap politicians’ claptrap,” he said.