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EU accused of applying double standards in migration policy

September 19th, 2017

A pro-government commentator attacks the EU for expressing willingness to financially support the closure of the Libyan border to stop the flow of refugees, while it has harshly criticized Hungary for erecting a fence.

Pesti Srácok’s Gyula T. Máté accuses the EU of applying double standards by supporting Italian proposals to seal off Libya’s southern border. The pro-government commentator contends that while the European Union harshly criticized the border fence erected by Hungary, it offered financial help for Baltic states as well as Greece to stop illegal migrants. The European Commission turned down PM Orbán’s request to reimburse half of the cost of the Hungarian border fence. EC spokesman Alexander Winterstein said that the EU had indeed sponsored border surveillance, but not physical border closure projects (see BudaPost September 4). Commenting on the Italian government’s efforts to stop illegal migration from Libya, Máté finds it highly contentious that the EU is willing to support border surveillance and mount patrols which effectively seal off Libya’s southern border. Máté recalls that the EU is also considering the easing of the weapon embargo, in return for Libya’s cooperation on border controls. All this, Máté suspects, will increase the profit of Western European arms producers – while helping the Libyan government to “slaughter Central African refugees in a humane, European way”.

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