Prague, June 30 (CTK) – The EU or the United Nations should build refugee camps in Africa and the Middle East that would deal with asylum applications and where illegal refugees caught on EU territory would be transported, Czech Deputy Prime Minister Andrej Babis (ANO) told Tuesday’s issue of daily Pravo.
Finance Minister Babis said the unregulated migration threatens Europe much more fundamentally than Russia.
“Islamic State, terrorism and unregulated immigration are a bigger threat to Europe than a conflict or the cold war with Russia,” Babis said.
“The EU needs its own Ellis Island, or refugee camps in southern and eastern Mediterranean that would take care of asylum applicants and that would deal with their applications. Regulated immigration must be the goal,” Babis said.
The 11 hectare Ellis Island at the mouth of the River Hudson between Jersey City and New York was the gate to the United States for millions of immigrants in 1892-1954.
Babis proposes that the facilities should be under U.N. protection, but Europe can also build them by itself.
He said agreement with a North African state on building an enclave for this purpose would be an alternative, adding that Australia has opted for settling asylum applications outside its own territory.
Hynek Kmonicek, director of the Presidential Office foreign department, said such centres would probably have to be created right in the north of Africa in cooperation with the relevant states.
He was referring to Spain’s agreement on its enclaves Ceuta and Melilla on the Moroccan border aimed to cope with illegal immigration from Africa to its territory a few years ago.
Babis said it is of key importance to involve world great powers (the United States, Russia and China), but also Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries in solving the migration crisis.
He criticised the EU policy of redistribution of refugees according to which EU countries are to spread 60,000 refugees according to their own choice.
“This will not say anything about how many people the smugglers will get to Europe. The continent must defend the Schengen area right on the border. Since it is not dealing with this, the Hungarians are building a fence along their border. Unless something starts to be done, every country will solve it by itself, which can lead to the disintegration of the Schengen area,” Babis said.
Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) agrees with Babis.
“I have been proposing the building of similar facilities for several months. I have agreed with British Prime Minister (David) Cameron on the need for them, we also spoke about them at the European Council. The Visegrad countries also agree with this,” Sobotka said.
The Visegrad Four (V4) is comprised of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.
Kmonicek said the EU must apply along its outer border a system that will allow its member countries to sufficiently control the migration wave.