For the first time in two years the European Union has shifted its attention back to migration flows from Africa, after effectively shutting down the so-called Balkan route through a deal with Turkey.
CCTV’s Jack Barton reports from Brussels.
EU aims to tackle North African migration crisis at ministers meetingThere were more than a million migrants traveled to Europe via Turkey and Greece last year. E.U. declared on Friday the shutting down of that route, after sealing the deal with Ankara.
EU aims to increase re-settlement from Turkey, as well as relocation from Greece and Italy, according to Dimitris Avramopoulos, European commissioner for migration.
Migrants from North Africa, however, have been returning to an often-fatal option: human smuggling.
Netherlands’s Minister for Migration Klaas Dijkhoff believes that they have managed to gain control of the migrant flows through Turkey to Greece and found a way to stop people from putting their lives in the hands of smugglers in the Aegean Sea.
But the situation is getting worse in the Mediterranean Sea. Nearly 45,000 migrants have crossed the Mediterranean to Europe so far this year.
In Libya, people smugglers can still operate freely while the United Nations backed government attempts to establish order.
Slovakia, set to take over the EU’s rotating presidency, pledged on Friday to push forward with a new European border guard and speed up deportations.