Today European Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management Christos Stylianides met with the Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras in Athens, to reaffirm the European Commission's full partnership and solidarity with Greece in addressing the humanitarian needs of refugees stranded in the country.
Commissioner Christos Stylianides said: "Solidarity is at the heart of the new instrument we are creating for emergency support within Europe. This is exactly why I visited Athens today. To reaffirm our solidarity with Greece and to consult and coordinate our future complementary actions. We all share the same goal: to tackle effectively the increasing needs of refugees hosted in Greece and to alleviate their suffering. Greece is not alone during these difficult times".
Furthermore, Commissioner Stylianides commended the Greek people for their solidarity with those forced to flee wars and conflicts adding: "The generosity of the Greek people to the refugees is an example for us all".
Most of the new instrument's funds will be geared towards Greece, whose financial and administrative capacities have been overstretched by the refugee crisis. Today's meeting was a timely opportunity to share a mutual understanding on the paramount importance of consulting and coordinating with Greece on the implementation of this new instrument with the UN and other humanitarian organisations.
The European Commission welcomed earlier this week the agreement by Member States on its €700 million proposal for an Emergency Assistance instrument to provide faster means of support to EU countries facing major humanitarian crises, such as dealing with large numbers of refugees.
For More Information
Video of the meeting available here
Press release: Commission proposes new Emergency Assistance instrument for faster crisis response within the EU http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-16-482_en.htm
MEMO/16/483: Addressing humanitarian crises within the European Union http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-16-483_en.htm