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Call for new EU system for asylum-seekers

23 Feb 2023 / eu Print

Call for new EU system for asylum-seekers

The European Commission has decided to formally register a citizens’ initiative that calls for a new system of distributing asylum-seekers around the EU, as well as binding reception standards for those seeking international protection.

The commission points out that the decision to register is of a legal nature, and does not pre-judge any conclusions the EU body may take on the initiative.

Under the European Citizens’ Initiative process, the organisers now have six months to open a campaign to collect signatures.

If an initiative receives one million statements of support within one year, from at least seven different member states, the commission will have to react. It can decide to take the request forward, or not, but must explain the reasoning for its decision.

Dublin Regulation

The initiative registered yesterday (22 February) calls for a revision of the Dublin Regulation, which determines which country is responsible for considering an individual’s application for international protection.

The organisers argue that the regulation places the bulk of the responsibility for asylum demand on a few states, and call for a new allocation mechanism.

“In 2020, almost 80% of first asylum applications were made in Greece, Italy and Spain,” they say.

They also want binding reception standards for asylum-seekers, covering areas such as food, health, housing, education, and work.

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