PM hails "European solution" for Aquarius migrants
Paris, 25 September 2018
Once again, a European solution has been found; it is humane, effective and respects two essential principles of responsibility and solidarity: landing in a nearby safe port and taking in those on board in a spirit of solidarity.
Malta, whose humanitarian commitment we commend, will take charge of the 58 people on board the Aquarius, among whom are 17 women and several young children.
France, Germany, Spain and Portugal have reached an agreement for taking their fair share of the people rescued. OFPRA [French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons] will be on the ground in Malta tomorrow.
The ship Aquarius, which no longer has a flag, will then sail to Marseille.
France has once again shouldered its responsibilities. Since June, it has been at the heart of each European solution to find a response to these emergency situations, in a spirit of responsibility and solidarity.
This solution, which sets strict standards, is the only one which genuinely addresses the issue.
From now on it is essential for concrete, swift action to be taken at European level, as France and several partners are proposing, to establish a permanent mechanism which combines landing at the nearest safe port with taking one’s share of people in need of protection, and the other – economic – migrants having to be swiftly escorted back to the border./.