European Union member states remained mostly divided to start June over how to embrace and share burdens of the aftermath of the migrant crisis in a troubling sign, that political divisions will continue to develop.
While millions of people have escaped the world’s worst war zones and poverty-stricken areas in Africa and the Middle East, they have made the treacherous journey by land and sea to Europe. In 2015, the number of people applying for asylum in Europe peaked at 1.26 million and triggered the current migration crisis, which has created unwanted stress for numerous member states in the Eurozone.
In particular, Czech Republic Prime Minister Andrej Babiš has had enough with Brussels. Babis on Monday rejected a new “flexible” European Union strategy for refugee migration peddled by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis arrives at a news conference at government headquarters in Prague, Czech Republic, March 2018. (Source: Reuters)
Over the weekend, Merkel proposed a “flexible system with division of labor” which could severely penalize member states that refuse to take in migrants and refugees.
Prague, along with numerous other European member states, has rejected a new quota system drawn up by the European Commission to redistribute asylum seekers around the bloc, said Reuters.
“We don’t want to compensate, why should we compensate with a contribution?” Babiš said in an interview with the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.
“We have said clearly: it is our people, our businesses who will decide who will work and live with us.”
Merkel’s proposal for a “flexible” system could see some European member states like the Czech Republic who reject Brussels’ request to take in refugees — instead provide financial assistance to other member states on the front lines of the crisis.