Commissioner Avramopoulos: The walls and fences take us back to the deeply divided postwar Europe of the past

“The walls and fences take us back to the deeply divided postwar Europe of the past,” EU Commissioner for Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos on Sunday said in an interview with Realnews newspaper.

Avramopoulos expressed his optimism over the refugee relocation programme from Greece and Italy to other EU countries. “Our argument that the EU common approach is more effective than national, individual measures will persuade even the most reluctant ones to participate,” he underlined.

Referring to EU funds for the management of the refugee issue, Avramopoulos stressed the need for Greece to speed up procedures for the absorption of programmes and added: “The European Commission is in constant communication with the Greek authorities to help them overcome any possible problems.”

The Greek Commissioner accused the “xenophobic and populist forces” of linking migration with terrorism, without ruling out the possibility of exploitation of the refugee issue in order “to serve malicious purposes.”

Finally, he reassured that the tolerance and solidarity shown to the refugee crisis will not be at the expense of the citizens’ security.