V4 Report: The Mediterranean’s “Southern Seven” preparing to battle Visegrad and the CEE states over mandatory migrant quotas in 2018.
The leaders of Cyprus, France, Greece, Italy, Malta, Portugal and Spain are meeting for a fourth time. The “Southern Seven” is an initiative launched by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in September 2016. Alexis Tsipras? Perhaps their efforts are already doomed for failure.
Migration is expected to top the agenda, according to FRANCE 24’s Tom Kington, reporting from Rome. “These countries meeting here in Rome would like to do more to shift the burden of this phenomenon to countries in northern Europe.” Phenomenon? This is not a phenomenon, but a reality when one surrenders their border. Western Europe is both rich and weak. The smugglers and illegal migrants will take advantage of those without the will to defend their border, culture or way of life.
According to the report, Greece is struggling to deal with more than 50,000 migrants, 14,000 of whom are crammed into tents or centres on overcrowded Aegean islands. This is due in large part to Greece’s refusal to deport “all irregulars” to Turkey as stipulated under the deal. They are creating a dangerous backlog in Serbia as well.
In Italy, the authorities have stopped providing details on the number of asylum seekers housed in its reception centres, with the last available figures showing nearly 200,000 last spring. Obviously, PM Paolo Gentiloni is trying to cover-up the mass chaos before the election. While Italy has struck a secret deal with militias in Libya to reduce the flow, plenty of illegal migrants from Africa are still being granted entry.
Interior Minister Marco Minniti – a former communist and the man behind Italy’s deal with Libya to block migrants from setting out for Europe – has urged the EU to follow Italy’s lead on “humanitarian corridors”. As we pointed out before, many of these western leaders are not interested in reducing migration to Europe, but only changing the “method of transfer”.
Brussels is also seeking to expand and enlarge the resettlement scheme to include illegal migrants from new countries in North Africa. The new political correct term is persons in “refugee-like” situations.
Three days before Christmas, Rome welcomed a group of 162 Ethiopian, Somali and Yemeni refugees who flew directly in from crisis-hit Libya.
Some 10,000 refugees are expected to follow in 2018, Minniti said – provided they are spread across the EU. We would advise Minniti that this is Italy’s decision, not Visegrad’s. If Italy invites the migrants, they better be prepared to keep them.
With the Balkan route closed and a coalition of Sebastian Kurz and the Freedom Party in Austria, the Med States have very little leverage. Mandatory migrant quotas will not be accepted. The last attempt had a failure rate of 79%. Today, even more CEE nations oppose the EU Parliament scheme. The Southern Seven may want to think about a permanent deportation mechanism instead if they are searching for “solidarity”.
Instead of trying to push their socialist agenda on others who want no part of it, the “Southern Seven” should accept the offers of Visegrad to help secure the border and transport the illegal migrants back to their countries of origin. After all, why should the “Open-door” philosophy of the Med States be allowed to overturn the national security priorities of Visegrad? None of these leaders were elected in the Visegrad or CEE states. In fact, Italy’s PM was not even elected by his own people (he was appointed).
Certainly the Visegrad states and Austria are ready to defend their culture, sovereignty and way of life. We hope the Baltic nations, Croatia and others in the CEE region know the stakes. They certainly see the results in Germany, Sweden and the Mediterranean states. Why would they follow the lead of the Southern Seven leaders?
Instead of slandering Visegrad, the old Southern Seven may want to learn a thing or two from the new energized members of Central Europe.