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Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas: The migration crisis has been brought under control, but there is still much to do

Stenbock House, 17 October 2016 – Prime Minister Taavi Rõivas acknowledged together with EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopoulos the fact that the European Union has brought the migration crisis under control at today’s meeting.

“Although migration flows have subsided and the relocation of refugees has been finally launched, the results are still not those that would give rise to complacency. On the contrary, the work must continue and there is much to do,” Prime Minister Rõivas said at the meeting.

The Prime Minister said that the European Union should first ensure that the cooperation agreement with Turkey would be continuously applied and the parties would comply with their obligations. Furthermore, it is necessary to contribute more to the relations with North African countries, which act as the starting point for migration flow of growing importance, and continue to support the frontline countries of the refugee crisis in the Middle East.

“Estonia lives up to the commitments it has entered into and we have chosen the right path if we carry out a thorough background check on people before bringing them here,” Rõivas said and added that it is essential that all Member States would keep their promises.

Prime Minister Rõivas recognised the establishment of the European Border and Coast Guard, which he considers an important step forward in guarding the external borders of Europe. According to the Prime Minister, the key issue with regard to guarding the borders lies in flawlessly functioning information systems, which must be reciprocally operated by all internal security authorities across Europe.

“Therefore, it is necessary to significantly increase investments in the IT sector. The officials dealing with migration flow must be provided with the best tools, which ensure them the fastest exchange of information,” Prime Minister Rõivas added.