A group of pro-refugee activists will bring paper ships outside the Maltese Parliament at noon tomorrow in a stunt to urge politicians to push for a reform in the EU’s migration laws.
The activists from the NGOs Kopin, SOS Malta and the People for Change Foundation are calling for a reform in the Dublin Regulation – the controversial EU law which determines which countries are responsible for the processing of asylum applications.
“Although asking asylum in Europe is a fundamental right, the unfair rules and policies make the European asylum system ineffective and inefficient,” the NGOs said. “European leaders need to overcome the national interests in safeguarding the borders and cooperate towards finding an effective European answer to migration policies. Our leaders have the obligation to give substance to the principle of solidarity, on which the Union is founded.”
“Solidarity and collaboration among member states should not be requested at the expense of people in distress at sea, as we have seen too often happening in these last weeks. It should be done by changing unfair rules and not leaving major responsibilities on welcoming refugees only to the border countries.”
The demonstration comes amidst an ongoing row over the fate of the migrants aboard the Lifeline – a search and rescue ship run by a German NGO which is currently stranded in Maltese waters. Malta has agreed in principle to let the ship dock in its harbour but is awaiting confirmation from five or six other member states that they will help it relocate the people on board.