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Brussels is proposing an EU package of € 600 million for its neighbors in Afghanistan to take in refugees as it seeks to avoid a recurrence of the 2015 Syrian migrant crisis.
The Taliban take over Afghanistan from the Taliban sudden withdrawal of American and allied forces caused the fear of instability in the country and possibly a large number of displaced persons and refugees who fled from the Islamic militant group.
Many EU capitals have warned that the bloc must act to prevent a situation like this 2015 refugee crisis caused by the war in Syria. More than a million migrants entered Europe, causing bitter riots between member states and paralyzing Brussels’ legal mechanisms for dispersing asylum seekers.
EU officials said the proposal was to offer about € 600 million to neighboring countries to help them house refugees fleeing the Taliban regime. This could mean that Brussels provides cash to Pakistan, possibly to Uzbekistan and Tajikistan and even to Iran, which is under international sanctions.
The plan reflects Brussels’ temporary effort to ease the crisis in 2015 by providing financial support to Turkey in exchange for the country taking in refugees rather than allowing them to travel to Europe.
Migration has been a sensitive issue for EU states since the 2015 crisis. “Even before the takeover of the Taliban, mainly eastern states have sounded the alarm over Belarus’ efforts to encourage migrants, some from Afghanistan, to join the EU using a tactic commissioned by the commission.”an act of aggression. ”
EU Home Affairs ministers held an emergency meeting in Brussels on Tuesday to discuss the outcome of the change of power in Afghanistan. The last American soldiers flew out of Kabul on Monday night when Washington ended its 20-year war in the country.
In a statement at the beginning of the meeting, the Home Affairs Ministers of Austria, Denmark and the Czech Republic said: “The most important thing is to send the right message to the region: stay there and we will support the region to help the people. . ”
No agreement is expected during Tuesday’s talks, and the amount of financial aid will be adjusted in consultation with other international partners, including the UK, with a first possible meeting to be held next week under G7 Home Affairs ministers. .
“We are at the beginning of the budget cycle, we are not scraping the barrel as in 2015,” European Commission Vice President Margaritis Schinas told the Financial Times. “I do not think money will be the problem.”
Schinas said the bloc, in contrast to the 2015 crisis, is seeking early negotiations with neighboring Afghanistan. “We are working closer to the problem so that the Afghans along the way will find something rather than put themselves in the hands of smugglers.”
Horst Seehofer, Germany’s interior minister, said the EU needed to act quickly “to prevent another failure of the West”.
‘It is very important to speed up diplomatic efforts. “If we act fast, we will not repeat 2015. If we make mistakes and debate for too long, it will not lead to a good development in the coming months. ‘
Seehofer added: ‘I do not think it is very smart to talk about numbers, because numbers can cause a pull effect.
The € 600 million, which would be provided by the commission, would be part of an aid package from Afghanistan of about € 1 billion. It will include about 300 million euros in direct humanitarian aid, most of which is intended for women, girls and other vulnerable groups in the country.