Frontex: Illegal migration into Europe increased dramatically in May

Following the brief lull in illegal migration into Europe that was seen in March and April as a result of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic, the number of migrants illegally entering Europe has risen dramatically once again.

In the month of May, authorities recorded some 4,300 illegal border crossings on Europe’s main migration routes, nearly three times as many as were recorded in the previous month, reports the Funke Media group, citing the Frontex – the EU border protection agency.

According to the report, the Eastern Mediterranean migration route from Turkey to Greece was the most active in May, with Frontex recording 1,250 illegal border crossings – eight times as many that were seen in April.

The majority of migrants traveling along this route are said to have originated from Afghanistan. 

Migration along the Central Mediterranean migration route – the route which runs from Libya and Tunisia to Italy and Malta – also saw a considerable uptick in May, with more than 1,000 illegal crossings record, a 40 percent increase compared to April. Most migrants traveling along this route came from Bangladesh, Sudan, and the Ivory Coast. 





New EU migration policy needs mandatory relocation, says German envoy

New EU migration policy needs mandatory relocation.

The upcoming overhaul of the EU's migration and asylum policy must include mandatory relocation of refugees within the bloc in order to become a "functioning system," Germany's ambassador to the EU said Thursday.

"I don't believe that you can really have a solution to the migration file if not in the end, at some stage, there's some kind of mandatory relocation," Michael Clauss said at an event organized by the European Policy Centre.

"Maybe there can be an interim phase but in the end it's very difficult for me to see that there could be an agreement and a functioning system for migration and asylum without mandatory relocation," he added.

The European Commission is expected to present a proposal for a new asylum and migration policy before the end of the month.





Europol: Deconfinement likely to trigger new migration wave

Europol, the European Union’s law enforcement agency, has warned that migrant smuggling is expected to increase considerably as deconfinement continues across Europe.

In its annual report, the European Union’s police agency notes that the bloc is likely to face a new wave of migration from the Third World as lockdown measures are lifted and border restrictions are eased.

“Relaxation of travel and movement restrictions will likely lead to an increase in the movements of irregular migrants, both facilitated and non-facilitated,” the Hague-based agency warned. 

“While the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis in Europe is not yet clear but expected to be significant, the impact on economies in the developing world is likely to be even more profound. Prolonged economic instability and the sustained lack of opportunities in some African economies may trigger another wave of irregular migration towards the EU in the mid-term.”

Europol also mentions having noticed changes in the way migrant smugglers are operating as a result of tighter border controls within the European Union.