Will Greece finally act to deport the illegals back to Turkey, or is this more of the same talk (PM is member of EPP) designed only to calm the public?
We shall see. Greece is talking about establishing five closed pre-departure centers for migrants. If “pre-departure” is intended to be followed-up by deportations, it’s a good (although small) step in the right direction. However, if “pre-departure” means just transferring migrants to the mainland or to others in the EU, this would be highly counterproductive.
Two issues have already caused the V4 Report to doubt the seriousness of this proposal.
1. This is the most alarming. Greece announced its first aim is to transfer 20,000 migrants from the islands to the mainland by the end of the year. Hopefully, these closed centers are used for deportations, not processing centers until they can relocate the migrants to the mainland or other states in the EU.
If Greece was serious, it would be logical to first deport 20,000 migrants, instead of transferring 20,000 to the mainland. If the goal is to relieve Greece, it makes no sense to transfer more to the mainland, unless Greece believes the migrants will eventually be spread-out throughout Europe, whether by their own initiative or a new EU migrant “sharing” scheme.
2. The “closed centers” are to host no more than 5,000 migrants. This number is too low, especially given the daily influx of new arrivals. Greece may be chasing its own tail, unless mass deportations begin immediately.
We see no sign of action, just talk…and given how well-informed the NGOs keep the migrants, there is no doubt many will soon disappear into ‘mainland Europe’.
* Based on the past history of Greece and the EU, we remain very skeptical that any meaningful type of deportation program will be implemented to send the migrants back to their homelands and outside of Europe.
After all, one has heard a lot of useless talk from Greece and the EU…for the last four years!