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Chancellor Merkel Sets Tone for EU Summit on Migration Crisis By Opposing Sealing Off Borders

Migrant-crisis-Angela-Merkel-606765Chancellor Angela Merkel said today that the pursuit of a common strategy for the management of EU’s external borders and the protection of the Schengen agreement will be the focus of the EU summit, which begins tomorrow in Brussels.
Speaking about the idea of new quotas for the distribution of migrants around Europe, Merkel said that she won’t be pushing for the issue, and added that it would be “laughable” for Europe to move in this direction when it has barely started to share refugees under existing agreements.
Instead, she said, the key issue is to work with Turkey to try to stem the flow of migrants across the Aegean Sea to EU member Greece — a crossing that more than a million people made last year — rather than shutting down Greece’s northern border with FYROM.
“Our common goal is to drastically and lastingly reduce the number of refugees so as to better help those people who really need our assistance,” she said.
She also added that it is of the utmost importance that the European Union learns how to protect maritime borders. “If we don’t learn, we won’t succeed next time with Italy, across the sea from Libya,” Merkel said.
“A continent that doesn’t manage that and only reacts by sealing (borders) off just behind the maritime border, and says ‘we’re not interested in whoever is behind the fence’ — I am convinced that can’t be the European answer,” she said
(Source: AP)

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