In its conclusions of 24-25 March, the European Council called on Member States to intensify their efforts in a continued spirit of unity and solidarity, and it invited the Commission to take the necessary initiatives to facilitate such efforts. At the extraordinary Justice and Home Affairs Council of 28 March, Vice-President for Promoting our European Way of Life, Margaritis Schinas and Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson, in coordination with the French Presidency of the Council represented by Minister Gérald Darmanin, presented a 10-Point Plan for stronger European coordination on welcoming people fleeing the war against Ukraine.
The 10-Point Plan
- Create an EU platform for registration to exchange information on beneficiaries of temporary protection and national protection statuses, supported by EU-LISA, the EU’s Agency for the Operational Management of Large-Scale IT Systems in the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice.
- An EU level coordinated approach for transport and information hubs, supported by the European Union Agency for Asylum.
- Mapping reception capacity and accommodation to match the offers of those Member States that can provide help to those that need support, and help organise transfers from Member States under most pressure, supported by the Commission’s ‘Safe Homes’ initiative. The European Union Agency for Asylum will provide targeted support to Member States on the basis of operational plans and coordinate the EU network of reception agencies and authorities.
- Developing national contingency plans to address medium to long-term needs. The Commission will support Member States and it will develop a common European contingency and response plan. The Commission will develop a common EU index to which Member States, European Agencies and International Organisation should feed into.
- The Commission together with the European Union Agency for Asylum will develop standard operating procedures and uniform guidance for the reception and support of children, and the Commission to develop specific procedures for the transfer of unaccompanied minors.
- A common anti-trafficking plan to prevent trafficking and exploitation. Under the lead of the EU Anti-Trafficking Coordinator, an anti-trafficking plan will be developed to address the risks of trafficking and support potential victims. The plan will be based on the EU Strategy on Combatting Strategy in Human Beings (2021-2025).
- Reinforced solidarity with Moldova through increased transfers and the rapid deployment of Frontex teams to Moldova. The transfers, in cooperation with the UNHCR and IOM and supported by EU funding are an immediate priority.
- A reinforced framework for international cooperation on safe destinations. The Solidarity Platform, in cooperation with the relevant Agencies and other relevant partners, will coordinate
contacts with Canada, US, the UK and other international partners.*
- Address internal security implications of the war in Ukraine. The European Multidisciplinary Platform Against Criminal Threats (EMPACT) network and Europol will support Member States to ensure maximal vigilance against organised crime and trafficking groups and ensure the enforcement of EU sanctions against Russian and Belarussian individuals. Member States are encouraged to cooperate through the bilateral deployments of police officers in the framework of Prum and the Commission will support such efforts.
- Adequate resources and funding. To provide comprehensive guidance and individualised support to EU Member States a one-stop shop to bring together all relevant Commission experts has been established. To support the efforts of the Member States the European Commission has proposed to facilitate the flexible use of funding.
The full version of the 10 point plan can be found here.
On 24-25 March, the European Council called upon the Commission to take the necessary steps to support Member States in intensifying their efforts to welcome refugees from Ukraine, in a continued spirit of unity and solidarity.
Following the previous two meetings of the Council dedicated to the situation in Ukraine, which led to an unprecedented humanitarian response and to the activation of the Temporary protection Directive, Home Affairs Ministers decided today to reinforce the coordination and solidarity efforts in order to welcome refugees in the best conditions.
Strong coordination and prioritisation at the European level, in support of Member States, is key for an effective response. The EU Solidarity Platform, set up by the European Commission, will act as the operational lynchpin for such coordination, including coordinating with relevant Ukrainian authorities and counterparts. The Council, through COREPER and the Integrated Political Crisis Response (IPCR), will continue to ensure a general steering of crisis management.
For More Information
10-Point Plan for stronger European coordination on welcoming people fleeing the war from Ukraine
Website - EU solidarity with Ukraine
Website – Information for people fleeing the war in Ukraine
Press release – Ukraine: EU support to help Member States meet the needs of refugees, 23 March 2022