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EU Council adopts new migration pact

Anadolu Agency EUROPE
Published May 15,2024

The Council of the European Union adopted a series of rules reforming the EU's asylum and migration system on Tuesday after they were approved by the European Parliament last month.

"This establishes a set of rules that will help to manage arrivals in an orderly way, create efficient and uniform procedures and ensure fair burden sharing between member states," the Council said in a statement.

"These new rules will make the European asylum system more effective and increase solidarity between member states. The European Union will also continue its close cooperation with third countries to tackle the root causes of irregular migration. Only jointly can we find responses to the global migration challenge," the EU body cited Nicole de Moor, State Secretary for Asylum and Migration of Belgium, which currently holds the rotating EU Presidency, as saying.

The screening regulation in the new pact "will allow national authorities to refer irregular migrants and asylum applicants at an external border to the relevant procedure and will make sure that identification, security and vulnerability checks and health evaluations are carried out in a uniform way," the statement noted, adding: "The new rules regarding the updated Eurodac database will allow to gather more accurate and complete data (also biometric data) on various categories of migrants, including applicants for international protection and people arriving irregularly in the EU."

Stressing that "the asylum procedure regulation streamlines the asylum process," it highlighted that the return border procedure regulation addresses the repatriation of individuals whose applications are declined within this border procedure.

In the new pact, the asylum and migration management regulation identifies "which member state is responsible for the examination of applications for international protection and for the first time introduces a fair sharing of responsibility among the member states."

It underlined that the crisis regulation will help the EU to better tackle "asylum applications in exceptional circumstances."

It indicated that the qualification regulation and reception conditions directive set out "uniform rules" for determining eligibility for international protection and the standards for the reception of asylum seekers, highlighting that "this should also help to reduce secondary movements between member states."

The resettlement regulation focuses on creating legal and secure routes to the EU through the creation of standardized rules for resettlement and humanitarian admission.

"In order to better deal with situations of crisis (mass arrivals and instrumentalization) and force majeure, member states can derogate from certain rules and request enhanced solidarity from other EU countries. Possible derogations apply for instance to deadlines for registering asylum applicants and the duration of the border procedure," it added.

The Council said the member states will "have two years to put the laws that were adopted today into practice, adding that "the European Commission will soon present a common implementation plan to provide assistance to member states in this process."