Athens: A holistic, coherent, and fair European approach to migration is the only way forward and member states must agree on a ‘Migration and Asylum’ pact, a senior official of the European Union (EU) has said here.
“Greece today manages migration with a clear plan, tangible results and is a pioneer in the co-shaping of a coherent European policy… The challenges we face remain significant,” Xinhua news agency quoted Margaritis Schinas, vice president of the European Commission, as saying.
Greece is one of the countries at the forefront of the refugee and migrant crisis in recent years which has called for more proportionate burden-sharing among EU member states.
More than a million people entered the country since 2015, mainly from Turkey, fleeing warzones and extreme poverty, according to migration authorities.
Most continued the journey to other European countries until the closure of borders of the Balkan route to Central Europe in the winter of 2016.
Following an EU-Turkey agreement on March 2016 aimed to stem the flows, the situation has improved. However, Greece still records thousands of new arrivals per year and dozens of lives lost in the Aegean Sea waters.