Tuesday

13th Nov 2018

EU ready to shore up Morocco migrant funding

The European Commission is ready to dole out more money to Morocco to help stem irregular migration into Spain.

"We are fully aware of the needs as conveyed by Morocco that require much higher financial effort and we are prepared to deliver this," commission spokeswoman Mina Andreeva told reports in Brussels on Wednesday (1 August).

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

  • (Photo: blueSkySunHigh)

It remains unclear what the 'higher financial effort' entails, but the EU had in July already earmarked €55m for Morocco and Tunisia from its EU Trust Fund for Africa.

The bulk of the money will go to Rabat and help train and better equip Moroccan border guards, a decision made in the aftermath of an EU summit where heads of state and government agreed to help the country "prevent illegal migration."

The commission says the Moroccan funding "is only the start of a longer term operation", a statement that also comes amid vague EU plans to get north African states to accept disembarked rescues.

More funding for Morocco is likely in autumn and then again in 2019.

The comments are a response to a recent Spanish demand for help following an increase of irregular migrant arrival pressure along its southern coast and in its Ceuta and Melilla enclaves bordering Morocco.

Over 23,000 have so far landed in Spain by sea this year, almost as many as the whole of 2017. The EU has provided Spain with €25.6 million to help with reception centres in the two enclaves and with returns.

Most of the Spanish arrivals are from sub-Saharan Africa, although many are also Moroccan nationals. The European Commission is negotiating an readmission agreement with Morocco.

In a letter addressed to Spanish prime minister Pedro Sanchez, the European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker on Wednesday stated that it "stands side by side with Spain" and that it is ready to provide additional support.

Juncker said extra money will be made available to Spain to help its civil guard officers patrolling the area.

EU Commission: Libya unfit for migrant disembarkation

The European Commission declined to comment on an Italian boat that reportedly returned rescued migrants at sea back to Libya - but instead said the country is too dangerous to be considered as a place safe enough for disembarkation.

EU to restrict refugee resettlement options

The European Commission unveiled concept papers on centres in the EU and platforms in north African states where disembarked migrants would be screened for protection or sent home. Plans build on EU summit conclusions but remain vague.

Xenophobia on the rise in Germany, study finds

Germans, in particular those living in the east, are demonstrating higher levels of xeonphobia and backlash against religious minorities than when compared to five years ago, according to a new study.

Magazine

'Integration' - the missing factor in new EU migration fund

An estimated 80 percent of Syrian refugees in the EU are unemployed - despite this, the integration of asylum seekers and migration remains outside the European Commission's policy objectives in its latest budget proposals for regional development and cohesion policy.

News in Brief

  1. UK seeks swift use of new EU chemical weapons blacklist
  2. Barnier briefs EU ministers: intense negotiations continue
  3. Romanian minister preparing EU presidency steps down
  4. Finland says Russia possibly behind GPS jamming
  5. German AfD leader under fire for Swiss campaign funding
  6. Seehofer announces he will step down as CSU party leader
  7. EU condemns elections in Russia-occupied eastern Ukraine
  8. German Greens pick two top candidates for EU election

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  2. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  3. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  4. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  5. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  6. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  7. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General
  8. NORDIC COUNCIL OF MINISTERSNordic design sets the stage at COP24, running a competition for sustainable chairs.
  9. Counter BalanceIn Kenya, a motorway funded by the European Investment Bank runs over roadside dwellers
  10. ACCACompany Law Package: Making the Best of Digital and Cross Border Mobility,
  11. International Partnership for Human RightsCivil Society Worried About Shortcomings in EU-Kyrgyzstan Human Rights Dialogue
  12. UNESDAThe European Soft Drinks Industry Supports over 1.7 Million Jobs

Latest News

  1. Romanian leaders trade jibes over upcoming EU presidency
  2. EU warns Romania not to abuse GDPR against press
  3. EU 'Magnitsky Act' must bear its proper name
  4. Fear of nationalist surge marks European memorials
  5. Liberals ally with Macron for election, but no candidate yet
  6. Revealed: Link between MEPs CO2 votes and domestic car jobs
  7. All Quiet on the Eastern Front?
  8. Merkel and Brexit in spotlight This WEEK

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us