World Refugee Day: EU continuously looking at ways to increase support to refugees
June 20, 2016
“World Refugee Day commemorates the plight of these men, women and children. It is for this reason that we are launching the #SupportRefugees campaign, with the aim to raise awareness of their situation and to demonstrate how the European Union provides tangible help”, said a joint statement issued by EU High Officials on the occasion of World Refugee Day (20 June).
The statement, issued by Frans Timmermans, European Commission First Vice-President for Better Regulation, Interinstitutional Relations, the Rule of Law and the Charter of Fundamental Rights, Federica Mogherini, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Neven Mimica, EU Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Dimitris Avramopoulos, EU Commissioner for Migration and Home Affairs, and Christos Stylianides, EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, stated: “The EU has not and will not turn a blind eye to this crisis and we will continue to share in the global efforts to address it… As the world’s leading humanitarian donor, our humanitarian response has helped millions affected by the crisis in Syria: we have provided them with over €6 billion collectively from EU and Member State budgets and we will continue to pledge financial support to displaced Syrians inside and outside their country.”
“Overall, more than €10 billion of the EU budget for the years 2015 and 2016 has been allocated to address the refugee crisis within the EU and in third countries”, added the statement while referring to the EU’s approach to prevent refugees and displaced people relying only on emergency humanitarian type assistance laid out last April in the Communication “Lives in Dignity: from Aid-dependence to Self-reliance”.
According to the statement, the EU tripled its resources for search and rescue operations at sea last year, contributing to saving more than 240,000 people in the Mediterranean and disrupting criminal smuggling networks through Frontex joint operations, EUNAVFOR Med Operation Sophia and cooperation in the Aegean with the Turkish authorities and NATO. (EU Neighbourhood Info)