Commission calls out Hungary, Poland and Czech Republic for refusing relocated refugees

The European Commission on Wednesday announced the start of infringement procedures against Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic for their refusal to accept refugees relocated from Greece and Italy, as decided by the European Council in 2015.

“Despite the Commission’s repeated calls for action, these three countries remain in breach of their legal obligations and have shown disregard for their commitments to Greece, Italy and other Member States,” the Commission’s announcement said.

The relocation programme required member-states to pledge available places for relocation every three months to ensure a swift and orderly relocation procedure, it noted.

According to the Commission, Hungary has taken no action of any kind since the relocation scheme started, Poland has not relocated anyone and not pledged since December 2015 while the Czech Republic has not relocated anyone since August 2016 and not made any new pledges for over a year.

Since the three countries had also defied the Commission’s urgings to meet their legal obligations, the Commission decided to launch infringement procedures and address letters of formal notice to all three.