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Refugee Crisis: UK position remains fundamentally inadequate despite new pledges

Refugees and migrants wait at the Macedonia border near the village of Idomeni, Greece © Amnesty International

Responding to the government’s announcement that the UK will send a ship to help with search-and-rescue operations in the Mediterranean and provide £25 million to Greece, Serbia and Macedonia to help deal with the refugee crisis in those countries, Amnesty UK’s refugee expert Steve Symonds, said:

“While we welcome these commitments, the fundamental inadequacy of the government's position remains. Tackling the current crisis effectively requires all EU countries to act together and recognise and respect obligations to refugees and others.

“The response must include responsibility-sharing among all EU countries - including the UK - for refugees already in Europe, and developing safe and legal routes so people who need asylum in Europe can get it without having to turn to people smugglers and make highly dangerous journeys across land and sea. As the weather across Europe turns, a humane and effective response is needed now more than ever, before many more lives are lost.”

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