• Germany's news in English

France, Germany call EU summit on migrants

AFP/The Local · 21 Aug 2015, 08:10

Published: 21 Aug 2015 08:10 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The meeting, to be followed by further talks in Berlin, will pave the way for broader discussions at an EU summit in Malta in November which will also be attended by African leaders, French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said after talks with his German counterpart Thomas de Maizière in the German capital.

De Maizière said it was "unacceptable that European institutions continue to work at their current slow pace" in finding a joint solution to the crisis, adding that "too little" was being done to implement decisions that have already been taken.

EU border agency Frontex reported on Tuesday that a record 107,000 migrants were massed at the bloc's borders last month, as the continent faces its biggest migration crisis since the Second World War.

De Maizière said he hoped new centres set up to determine whether new arrivals are refugees fleeing war, or economic migrants simply looking for work, would be operational by the end of the year in Greece and Italy, the countries bearing the brunt of the crisis.

Cazeneuve, meanwhile, called for a "harmonisation" of asylum laws in Europe and the creation of "a list of safe countries of origin at the European level" to make it easier to send home asylum-seekers whose countries are considered at peace.

He also urged a "deepening of cooperation among police and intelligence services" along the lines of a deal agreed Thursday between France and Britain to combat people smuggling at Calais.

European leaders are expected to use the Malta summit to encourage their African counterparts to do more to stem the flow of migrants heading across the Mediterranean in rickety boats in search of a better life in Europe.

They will also seek assurances that African countries will actually implement agreements signed with European countries to take back migrants who have been denied leave to remain in the EU.

De Maizière expressed hope that the European Commission will be able to move forward with agreements allowing rejected asylum-seekers to return to their home countries "without fear of persecution".

Cazeneuve added that this will require "discussions with the countries of origin".

Story continues below…

The two foreign ministers also discussed Ukraine, Cazeneuve said, adding that they prepared new initiatives on the conflict that will be presented to European institutions.

The leaders of France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine held telephone discussions Thursday, with all sides calling for the full implementation of a ceasefire deal, according to the French presidency.

SEE ALSO: Refugee numbers to reach 800,000 in 2015

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Today's headlines
Munich taxi driver in hospital after attack by British tourists
Photo: DPA

A taxi driver had to be hospitalized in Munich on Monday evening after three British tourists refused to pay their fare and then attacked him.

German police carry out nationwide anti-terror raids
Police outside a building in Jena during raids on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Police forces in five German states carried out raids on Tuesday morning with the aim of tackling the financing of terror groups, police in Thuringia have reported.

The Local List
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Photo: DPA

So you've mastered German, but now it's time to learn English all over again.

Iconic German church being eroded away by human urine
Ulm Minster towering over the rest Ulm surrounding the Danube. Photo: Pixabay

It will now cost you €100 to spend a penny. That’s if you get caught choosing to pee against the world-famous Ulm Minster.

German small arms ammo exports grow ten-fold
Photo: DPA

The government has come in for criticism after new figures revealed that Germany exported ten times the quantity of small arms ammunition in the first half of 2016 as in the same period last year.

14-year-old stabs 'creepy clown' in prank gone wrong
File photo: DPA.

A 16-year-old in Berlin decided he wanted to scare some friends, but his plot backfired in a violent way.

Four Ku Klux Klan groups active in Germany, says govt
An American member of the KKK at a gathering in Georgia. Photo: EPA.

The German government estimates that there are four Ku Klux Klan (KKK) groups currently active in the country, according to a report by the Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ) on Tuesday.

Ex-chancellor Schröder to mediate in supermarket row
Gerhard Schröder. Photo: DPA

Can Gerhard Schröder bring an end to the Kaiser's Tengelmann saga?

Outrage over ruling on 'brutal' gang rape of teen girl
The now convicted suspects, sitting in court in Hamburg. Photo: DPA.

A 14-year-old girl was gang-raped and left partially clothed and unconscious in freezing temperatures. Now prosecutors are appealing the sentences for the young men found guilty, most of whom will not set foot in jail.

Dozens of Turkish diplomats apply for asylum in Germany
Demonstrators holding a giant Turkish flag protest against the attempted coup in Istanbul in July. Photo: DPA.

Since the failed putsch attempt in Turkey in July, Germany has received 35 asylum applications from people with Turkish diplomatic passports, the Interior Ministry confirmed on Wednesday.

Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd