The European Commission's new migration pact prescribes that if expulsion does not succeed in eight months, the member state responsible for the expulsion of the migrant will have to receive them on its territory, effectively completing the process of accepting a quota migrant, MEP Jaak Madison writes.
The European Commission unveiled its new migration pact last Wednesday the coverage of which in the media has been superficial at best and centered around amplifying the Commission's slogans.
It has long been said that there will not be new mandatory migration quotas and the ordinary person led to believe that borders will be strengthened and illegal migrants expelled. If countries have been unable to manage it so far, why should things be different now?
European institutions are controlled by the left and one of the authors of the new pact, Internal Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson really believes that "immigration will cause our continent to blossom." She describes migration from third countries as beneficial and necessary.
Common sense would suggest that Johansson is not going against her convictions, which is also evident in the pact that is riddled with clever little clauses.
The devil is in the details and the mandatory solidarity mechanism the elephant in the room in this case. It gives member states the choice of whether to accept immigrants or sponsor returning them. If the so-called solidarity forum finds the member state's measures unsuitable or insufficient, they can still theoretically enforce quotas.
How many countries would decide to allow migrants? If all countries only tried to demonstrate mandatory solidarity by sending migrants back, pressure on border countries would not be relieved to any notable degree.
Someone will have to allow migrants entry, while even member states that would normally be willing to accept them, such as Germany and Sweden, are wary of losing votes to the right these days. In the end, we might even see these "solidarity states" refuse to accept enough migrants, leaving Europe at an impasse again.
If we were to choose the return mechanism, the illegal migrants to be expelled might still end up in Estonia. The migration pact prescribes that if expulsion does not succeed in eight months (four months during a crisis), the member state responsible for the expulsion of the migrant will have to receive them on its territory, effectively completing the process of accepting a quota migrant.
Expulsion fails very often because a migrant cannot be returned to a country where their well-being might be in danger or if the country of origin refuses to cooperate. You can imagine there are quite a few such countries in Africa.
According to the Migration Pact, cooperation with countries of origin would be influenced using visas. Those that refuse to coordinate will be denied European visas, while those that do will have them. This would in turn work to legalize and add to migration from third countries through work, study and residence visas.
The pact at hand will pass through several rounds of debates and compromises before it is finished and could change in time. Even the left is criticizing the pact for not achieving enough, looking to add tougher conditions. Time will tell what will happen. Until then, we wish Europeans health and a cool head.
Editor: Marcus Turovski