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EU Authorities Maintain Schizophrenic Approach to Greece Over Border Controls

migration-greeceFor the last few months, European Union (EU) authorities have maintained a rather schizophrenic approach to Greece with regard to the management of the migration crisis.
With over 850,000 people having landed on Greece’s shores alone this past year, EU officials are trying to blame Greece for the number of people reaching the core of the continent.
Accordingly, Greek authorities have been warned that if they continue to fail with the fulfillment of the country’s obligations under the Schengen Agreement, Greece may be ring-fenced, meaning that the Schengen borders will be pushed closer towards central Europe.
Yet, the European Commission has released reports very recently which commend Greece for the progress it has made in the management of the migration crisis, while Frontex has praised the Greek coast guard for saving thousands of lives from drowning in the Aegean sea.
Still, only the other day, the Austrian foreign minister held talks with his counterpart in the government of FYROM whereby he made an urgent plea for the closing of FYROM’s borders so migrants won’t be able to cross into central Europe.
In the event of such an outcome, hundreds of thousands of people will be permanently stranded inside Greece, which means Greece will be converted into a refugee concentration camp.
But lo and behold, European Commission spokesperson for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Tove Ernst said today that any action taken with regard to FYROM’s borders must be made in collaboration with the Greek authorities and Frontex, the agency which coordinates and develops European border management.
Tove Ernst welcomed any support provided by European member states to FYROM, and mentioned that an additional ten million euros have been distributed to FYROM’s government for the purpose of improving the inspection of refugees and migrants in its borders
Tove Ernst said that such help is not aimed towards ring-fencing but rather towards ensuring that borders will remain open through the better management of the influx of refugees.
With regard to work under way in hotspots in Greece, the European Commission’s spokesperson for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship said that the Commission is pleased with the progress made.
Likewise, European Commission’s Chief Spokesperson Margaritis Schinas said that Greece will not be isolated and that any decision taken by Europe towards solving the continent’s migration crisis will involve the collaboration of Greek authorities.
Of course, no one should be surprised if tomorrow the EU authorities change again their tune towards Greece and go back to threatening the country with isolation from the Schengen area.

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