The news of the 50 migrants found asphyxiated in the hull of a ship last night, and the lost souls of 20 or more migrants discovered abandoned in a truck on an Austrian highway today are frankly shocking. These are sinister, criminal acts, carried out by smugglers with no scruples whatsoever.
The migration crisis is not somewhere far away. It is happening right in front of us.
Chancellor Faymann is right when he says we cannot go on this way.This is not an Austrian crisis. This is not an Italian, French, German or a Greek or a Hungarian crisis. This is a European crisis and it requires a collective European response.
The Commission put that European response on the table - from increasing our presence at sea, to cooperating with countries of origin and transit, to clamping down on smuggling networks, making returns more effective and implementing the recently adopted common EU asylum rules whilst showing solidarity with frontline countries – we have to address the issue from all angles. We already announced that further proposals will come soon.
Now is the moment for joint actions, and solidarity with all Member States and our partner countries in the region. That is also why we will be visiting several of the most affected Member States, starting from Calais on Monday and also Austria on 7 September, to discuss further support and joint actions.
In the meantime, some of the measures proposed by the Commission have already found support. All the others now urgently need to be taken up by the EU’s 28 Member States – even those who have until now remained reluctant to do so.