Czech regions also oppose EU refugee quotas

EU proposal would have more than 1,300 refugees sent to the Czech Republic

Kamenice, near Prague, May 28 (ČTK) — The Czech self-governing regions support the government’s disagreement with the EC-proposed refugee quotas, Michal Hašek, the Association of Regions chairman, said after meeting Interior Minister Milan Chovanec (both Social Democrats, ČSSD) today.

The Czech Republic is against the proposed compulsory quotas for redistribution of refugees and it will try to prevent their approval on the EU level, Czech leaders said earlier this week.

The EC has proposed that other EU countries take over 40,000 asylum seekers from Italy and Greece in the next two years. The Czech Republic should accept 1328 of them.

“I want to say that the Association of Regions supports the Czech government’s position as far as the rejection of the quotas is concerned,” Hašek said.

He said migration policy is a continual matter defined by both European and national directives.

“The interior minister and his team assured us today that in the Czech areas where the relevant asylum centers are situated, the safety of Czech citizens is and will always be ensured in accordance with law, and that any apprehensions or panic linked to a possible arrival of migrants would not be substantiated,” Hašek said.

He said migrants have been entering the Czech Republic gradually and the state treats them in accordance with international agreements and laws.

On Wednesday, Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (ČSSD) said Prague does not want to shun responsibility and that it sticks to the principle of solidarity. The Czech government is ready to take a maximum effort to help protect the lives of refugees. It will intensify Czech aid to the refugees in third countries, Sobotka said.

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