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Ivan Korčok: “When it comes to the so-called ‘regional landing platforms’ it will be important to assure that they do not become an invitation for another waves of migrants.”

Ivan Korčok: “When it comes to the so-called ‘regional landing platforms’ it will be important to assure that they do not become an invitation for another waves of migrants.”

26.6.2018 | Aktivity štátnych tajomníkov | Slovensko a Európska únia

The Slovak Republic supports the fight against human traffickers and for comprehensive protection of the borders of the European Union and a solution to the primary causes of migration in their places of origin. This was said today (26 June) in Luxembourg by Ivan Korčok, State Secretary of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, at the meeting of the EU General Affairs Council (GAC) during the discussion on the preparations for the European Council. 


 
When discussing the item on migration, State Secretary Korčok highlighted the importance of protecting the EU’s external borders and emphasized the necessity to reach a consensus with regards to the proposed reform of the asylum system. “When it comes to the so-called ‘regional landing platforms’ we believe it is an interesting concept, however it will be important to assure that they do not become an invitation for another waves of migrants. We need to further develop this proposal; at the moment we see it only as the first step, even though in the right direction,” stated Korčok.

 

The ministers discussed further enlargement of the EU, particularly in relation to Macedonia and Albania. As the majority of speakers emphasized, dynamics of other events must be used in order to stimulate further progress – particularly in relation to the agreement that Macedonia concluded with Greece on the issue of the name of the country. State Secretary Korčok expressed support to the recommendation of the European Commission to open accession negotiations with Albania and Macedonia. He said that with these two countries it is clear that a merit-based approach brings results. 


 
“A few years ago, both countries were different than today; the change has been made due to our motivation in relation to the opening of accession negotiations and their vision for future membership in the EU. We should send a specific political signal that the doors to the EU have remained open, and support the opening of accession negotiations with Macedonia and Albania. These countries have fulfilled what we had expected of them. Now, this is the right moment to show that we are capable of and ready to affirm our support to reform endeavours and reward the positive steps that our partners in the Western Balkans have been taking, and also to prove that we wish to pursue EU interests in our immediate neighbourhood. It is also about our credibility,” stated Ivan Korčok. He added that the Slovak Republic has taken a positive but realistic approach to the process of enlargement. In their statements, most of the ministers indicated willingness to seek a compromise as to the issue of the right timing of the opening of accession negotiations and emphasized the need to encourage the candidate countries in their reforms as well as the necessity to affirm the credibility of the EU enlargement policy.