LUXEMBOURG JUNE 10, 2016 (CISA) – The Justice and Home Affairs Council of the European Union are meeting today to look into ways to reduce the number of refugees seeking entry to Europe from Libya and elsewhere in north Africa.
The EU is citing the growing instability in the EU’s southern neighborhood as the reason for the increasing number of people trying to make it to the continent and therefore the council is intensifying efforts to establish an effective, humanitarian and safe European migration policy.
The meeting in Luxembourg comes in the backdrop of refugees being denied entry into Europe via Greece, resulting in an increasing number of boats trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea from North African countries like Libya.
The EU fears the central Mediterranean route to Italy may become the main one now as calmer seas encourage more people to try the dangerous and often fatal journey.
“The EU-Turkey deal is functioning and so, if nothing changes, the central Mediterranean will this year be the route through which the bulk of migrants will be coming,” EU said in a statement.
In the meeting the Interior ministers from EU member states will exchange views on the implementation of the EU-Turkey statement and on the developments regarding the Central Mediterranean.
A part of those efforts would be to check “the root causes of migration flows” by trying “to address the reasons causing people to flee” their home countries, said EU.
According to EU estimates, about 45,000 people have already reached Italy this year, about the same number that arrived in the country through all of 2015. Worried about the long-term impact of massive migration from Africa, EU is reportedly considering linking development aid and trade ties with poor states to reduce migration.