Minister of Social Affairs Margus Tsahkna (IRL) called the European Commission’s proposal of a solidarity contribution to be paid by EU member states who don’t want to receicve refugees “absurd”.
Tsahkna pointed out that despite the failure of the commission’s plan to set up a redistribution system based on quotas, it had continued to work in that direction.
According to the minister, the automatic redistribution of arriving migrants based on member states’ economic strength and size, without granting the states the possibility to define conditions and the number of people they were ready to receive, would mean limiting countries’ rights to decide for themselves. Estonia hadn’t supported this and would continue the same way, Tsahkna said.
Tsahkna wrote on social media that Estonia needed to be very clear that it disagreed with what he called the “solidarity penalty”, and that there was nothing to discuss in the matter. He called the EC’s proposal a veiled attempt at pushing their real objective through, namely the automatic redistribution of refugees and the enforcement of regulations that limited member states’ sovereignty.
He added that it was critical that member states’ responsibility for people arriving on their territory was maintained, as sharing it across the union would mean that nobody would feel responsible. In addition, such shared responsibility wouldn’t motivate members to guard their borders, Tsahkna wrote.
Tsahkna also pointed out that the commission’s proposal had the potential to stir up eurosceptics even more and thereby damage the unity of the EU, rather than achieving the opposite.
Editor: Editor: Dario Cavegn