U.N. refugee chief calls for mass resettlement to save Europe's asylum system

Refugees and migrants arrive aboard the passenger ferry Eleftherios Venizelos from the island of Lesbos at the port of Piraeus, near Athens, Greece, December 18, 2015.  REUTERS/Alkis Konstantinidis
Refugees and migrants arrive aboard the passenger ferry Eleftherios Venizelos from the island of Lesbos on the port of Piraeus, close to Athens, Greece, December 18, 2015.

Reuters/Alkis Konstantinidis

The United Countries refugee chief known as on Friday for a “large resettlement” of Syrian and other refugees within Europe, to distribute many tons of of thousands of individuals ahead of the continent’s asylum device crumbles.Antonio Guterres, U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, welcomed an settlement for the european Union’s border company Frontex to lift its presence in Greece to assist register, reveal and interview asylum seekers, But stated it was now not enough.

“I mean a whole lot and lots of of hundreds of individuals, no longer simply what has been discussed until now with regards to resettlement,” Guterres mentioned, relating to the European’s current plan to resettle 160,000 asylum seekers within the 27-member bloc.

“If this is not put in place and the tragedy in the Aegean goes on and the Balkan chaotic state of affairs goes on, I Need To say I Am very concerned for the way forward for the european asylum device.”

Virtually 991,000 refugees and migrants have entered Europe by way of land and sea thus far this year and the number is expected to achieve 1 million in the coming days, the International Organization for Migration mentioned on Friday. Many others have drowned on the perilous ride.

“Clearly if Europe had been able to position its act together, in an effort to have proper reception capacity at entry points, do adequate screenings, distribute individuals normally and orderly into all European nations, this may be an extraordinarily small percentage of the european population,” Guterres said.

“We Are talking concerning the selection of folks coming to Europe by means of the Mediterranean is less than 2 per 1,000 of the selection of European voters.”

Guterres, a former Portuguese high minister, was talking to his final scheduled press convention earlier than stepping down after 10 years in the Geneva post.

The selection of folks forcibly displaced international is prone to have “far surpassed” a file 60 million this yr, mainly pushed by way of the Syrian warfare and different protracted conflicts, his U.N. company mentioned prior on Friday.

“I Have Never considered any development within the 2d six months. So my perception is that we will be able to have figures for 2016 so one can very almost definitely be worse than the ones for 2015,” Guterres stated.

“But there’s a international pattern for more restrictive policies in the admission of refugees, and in the advantages to accept to refugees, and that’s of course extremely caring for us.”

Guterres said diplomats had to get to the bottom of conflicts in Syria, Yemen and Libya, which are driving mass motion of people fleeing warfare and persecution.

“The Outcome subsequent 12 months is dependent generally on what’s going to be the development accomplished by these peace negotiations,” he mentioned.

(Reporting with the aid of Stephanie Nebehay; Enhancing through Andrew Heavens)

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