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Minister E. Misiūnas: Effective Returns - a Measure of Prevention of Illegal Migration

Date

2017 03 27

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Minister of the Interior Eimutis Misiūnas today participates in the European Union (EU) Justice and Home Affairs Council meeting in Brussels. During it the ministers of Member States discuss the implementation of migration policy measures and increasing efficiency of the return of illegal migrants.

Effective return is one of essential elements of the response to the migration crisis. Ineffective return policy encourages arrival of more illegal immigrants, and vice versa - inevitability of the return discourages migrants from illegal entry into the European Union ", - notes Minister E. Misiūnas.

The European Commission in the beginning of March of this year presented a communication on a more effective return policy in the EU, which provides a renewed action plan of the return measures implementation and recommendations to Member States.

According to the Minister E. Misiūnas, Lithuania gives priority to measures that would effectively prevent the abuse of asylum procedures, as well as measures focused on an enhanced information exchange among Member States. However, the effectiveness of return policy largely depends on cooperation with third countries. EU Member States should speak "with one voice", coordinate their actions and use all available means to third parties.

During the Council, the EU ministers of home affairs also discuss the implementation of relocation of persons from Italy, Greece and their resettlement from third countries. Lithuania as much as possible consistently fulfills its obligations.

Lithuania has so far relocated and resettled a total of 262 persons in need of international protection: 229 persons – from Greece, 8 – from Italy and 25 – from Turkey. Lithuania also demonstrates its solidarity by providing experts and technical equipment.