In light of the current migration crisis in Europe, the ALDE-CoR Vice President and CoR rapporteur on European Agenda on Migration met with the European Parliament shadow-rapporteur (on the LIBE report on the Situation in the Mediterranean and the need for a holistic EU approach to migration) Cecilia Wikström (ALDE) to discuss the question of how Member States and local authorities could cooperate together to resettle 160.000 Syrian refugees – a promise the European leaders have made – and more generally how to cope with the current situation.
Meeting with Ms Wikström on 16 February, Mr Decoster addressed the lack of solidarity in welcoming refugees to Europe and the fact that in view of the coming influx there’s no guarantee that local authorities, especially his own in Nord-Pas-de-Calais – Picardie, are able to cope with the numbers. This is exacerbated by the fact that funding goes currently through Member State governments and often ends up in the capital and does not reach the regions where it’s most needed. Mr Decoster called for direct funding access for LRA’s.
During the discussion Ms Wikström and Mr Decoster both agreed that a European response is needed to tackle the current crisis. Without admitting common responsibility the threat to the European project will only increase.