South Tyrol – at the request of Germany apparently – has promised to check all passengers trying to travel north towards Germany over the Brenner Pass, but Schengen has not been suspended (officially). Refugees in Budapest are being rounded up and put onto trains to who knows where? Hungarian PM Orbán is in Brussels complaining that most of the refugees coming to Europe are Muslim and not Christian and that this is a problem. And that’s all news from the last 24 hours in Europe’s migration crisis.
Who then, in Brussels, in the European Commission, is stepping up and trying to find an EU-wide solution to what very clearly by now is an EU-wide challenge?
The gentleman pictured above ought to be that person. He is Dimitris Avramopoulos, European Commissioner for Migration and Home Affairs.
What has he said about South Tyrol? Nothing.
About Hungary, Orbán and the border fence? Nothing.
About trying to resettle refugees? Nothing, because Jean Claude Juncker seems to vaguely be doing that.
Oh, but paranoia about a bloke with a weapon on a Thalys – that deserves a statement.
And all of this in the face of member states unilaterally or bilaterally undermining the Schengen border free zone, one of the very crucial cornerstones of EU integration. National leaders like Orbán behave nationally – that’s their job – so it’s the job of the EU institutions (and especially the Commission) to see EU-wide solutions to EU-wide issues.
Why is the Commission not stepping up here?
Also when an issue is beyond the scope of one Commissioner, the Vice Presidents are meant to step in (Commission structure here). Vice President Timmermans and High Rep Mogherini are the ones to which Avramopoulos is supposedly answerable, but they have remained silent too.