EU to reveal mandatory rules on migration

THE European Union (EU) is set to detail new, mandatory measures on managing migration, which has challenged the unity of the bloc for several years.

The German-backed migration pact is expected to provide funding for member states in return for hosting refugees.

It is also expected to focus on how EU states can share the task of taking in those arriving on Europe’s shores.

But, as in previous years, the new proposals are likely to face opposition from some member states.

Ever since the influx of migrants and refugees in 2015, mainly via Italy and Greece, the EU’s 27 states have been divided over their response.

Italy and Greece have accused wealthier northern countries of failing to do enough, but a number of Central and Eastern European nations have been openly resistant to the idea of taking in a quota of migrants.

The so-called “Mandatory Solidarity Mechanism” will oblige each member state to accept a number of refugees in return for a reported €10,000 (£9,200; $11,750) per adult and €12,000 for an unaccompanied child. Those EU states that fail to honour the pact could face court proceedings and large fines.

Countries such as Hungary and Poland that have refused to take in arrivals in the past could be asked to help return failed asylum claimants.

The new pact, which has been pushed most strongly by Germany and Chancellor Angela Merkel, has been brought forward following fires on the Greek island of Lesbos that left more than 12,000 migrants and refugees stranded.

The fires, which levelled the island’s sprawling and crowded Moria migrant camp, led to calls for European states to take firmer action and take in those who have been left homeless. But already the reported measures have led to the charity Save the Children to accuse the EU of failing to learn “from its recent mistakes”.