The European Council has examined the situation regarding migrations and the various different migratory routes. While the measures adopted by the European Union and the Member States have reduced the overall total of irregular flows in the last few years, continuing developments related to certain routes are causing serious concern and requiring continues vigilance and urgent measures.
To avoid the loss of human lives and to reduce the pressure on the frontiers of Europe, as an integral part of the European Union’s external action, associative initiatives and cooperative measures will intensify with countries of origin and transit so that they can be beneficial for all parties.
The focus will be pragmatic, flexible, made-to-measure, and, as Team Europe, will make a coordinated use of all the instruments and incentives at the disposal of the EU and the Member States. It will be developed in close cooperation with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) and with the International Organisation for Migration (OIM).
It will deal with all the routes used and base itself on an approach that takes into consideration each migratory route seen as a whole, fights the deep causes of migration. It gives support to refugees and displaced persons in the region, develops capacities to manage migration, puts an end to illicit trafficking, reinforces frontier controls, cooperates in terms of searches and rescues, at the same time dealing with legal migration that respects national competences, and guarantees returns and readmissions. For these reasons, the European Council:
- Urges the Commission and the High Representative to reinforce without delay, in close cooperation with the Member States, specific actions with the priority countries of origin and transit and with their support.
- Urges the Commission and the High Representative to present, in close cooperation with the Member States, action plans for the priority countries of origin and transit in the autumn of 2021, indicating clear objectives, more measures of support and specific time limits.
- Invites the Commission to make the best possible use of at least 10% of the financial donation of the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument, and also of the financing with other pertinent instruments, for measures in terms of migration, and to inform the Council of its intentions between now and November this year.
The European Council condemns and refuses any attempt by third countries to instrumentalist migrants for political purposes.