EU’s external border security a top priority, Varvitsiotis says

“The issue of the security of the European Union’s external borders is a number one priority of both our domestic and European policy,” Alternate Foreign Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis said on Friday after a meeting with the Minister responsible for European Affairs and the Constitution of Austria, Karoline Edtstadler, who is visiting Athens.

“We believe that Europe must show due respect for human rights and those entitled to asylum, but it cannot be turned into a mere transit space for illegal migrants,” he said.

“We want to continue the discussion for the consolidation and formation of a common migration and asylum policy, within the EU,” Varvitsiotis underlined. “We have to find a common solution to a common problem.”

Karoline Edtstadler: We believe that Greece is a guarantor of the borders

“We believe that Greece is a guarantor of the borders of the European Union,” the Austrian minister said, adding that “Turkey must understand this as well.”

“Austria will always support the initiatives taken by Greece,” she said, noting that the two countries are trying to promote their common interests through bilateral contacts and have a “wonderful relationship”.

“Migration concerns us because it is being used by many governments and many other actors,” she said, stressing the need to use the Commission’s additional funding in the best possible way.