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MEPs vote for new rules to foster European solidarity for refugees

Today the European parliament voted in favour of approving talks with EU Governments on a revised plan for refugees in Europe.

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Under the current Dublin system, it is up to the country where refugees arrive to process all asylum applications. 

The existing system is creating unfair burdens on “front-line” countries – most notably Greece, Italy, Bulgaria and Hungary - while other countries are engaged in a race to the bottom to become less attractive to refugees.

The new system, which was proposed by the European Commission last year, alters the system by implementing quotas to protect front-line countries from over-burden. Once the quota is met any new asylum applicants would be reallocated to another European country.

Long-term anti-human trafficking campaigner Catherine Bearder MEP, commented:

“The benefits of the new system are two-fold: not only will it foster true European solidarity by taking the burden off front-line countries and reassigning it, it will also protect vulnerable refugees from traffickers.

“For far too long Europe has allowed a defunct system to reign supreme, forcing the world’s most vulnerable people into the hands of unscrupulous human traffickers who use any means possible to smuggle them through Europe.

“This new approach shows Europe is no longer turning a blind eye to the plight of the most vulnerable people – it is way past time we finally ushered in new legislation to cope with the current reality.”

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