An immigration from Brussels says the EU’s international image suffers from the low number of refugees accepted each year.
According to UN figures, EU countries accepted 6.7 percent of the some 66,000 legally resettled refugees worldwide last year. The European Commission wants to fight illegal immigration by harmonizing rules and allowing more refugees to enter the bloc legally. Justice Commissioner Jacques Barrot suggested to Euronews that there is a moral obligation: “There are at the moment ten EU member states which take in refugees from abroad. These ten must be joined by the greatest number of countries. Europe has also suffered — from periods under the Nazis and from Stalin. And so Europeans must show a certain generosity.” The EU executive body says the burden of immigration influx falls heaviest on southern countries like Italy, Malta and Spain. The latest scheme is meant to discourage people from trying to reach Europe illegally and dangerously, with the help of human traffickers.