EU Court Rejects Bid By Hungary And Slovakia To Avoid Taking Migrants

Hungary and Slovakia (which accepted quota system but took in few refugees than mandated) brought the case to ECJ that will announce its ruling on the issue today, which will be released around 7:30 GMT.

"The mechanism actually contributes to enabling Greece and Italy to deal with the impact of the 2015 migration crisis and is proportionate", the ECJ said in a statement announcing its ruling.

Meant to last just two years, the measure adopted by the Council of the European Union calls for other EU member states to help relocate 120,000 migrants in need of worldwide protection.

He added that Budapest will take all legal action possible to prevent relocating people into Hungary "against the will of the Hungarian people".

Avramopoulos said if they fail to act soon, the Commission should consider taking "the last step in the infringement procedure, to refer Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic to the European Court of Justice".

But he said his government still is not happy with the relocation plan, which he and others from Eastern Europe see as being imposed on their countries by non-elected European Union bureaucrats.

Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic are also facing legal action by the EU executive, the European Commission, for their inaction over the relocation of asylum seekers.

Beata Szydlo, the Polish prime minister, said: 'We expected this decision.

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The group's European Union office director, Iverna McGowan, said that "Slovakia and Hungary have tried to dodge the EU's system for solidarity, but each country has a role to play in protecting people fleeing violence and persecution". Slovakia reacted by saying that the sentence should be complied with but that the relocation quotas do not work.

European Home Affairs Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos had said he regretted how certain member states "continue to show no solidarity and to ignore our repeated calls to participate in this common effort".

At his press conference following the ruling the Commissioner Mr Avramopoulos downplayed any suggestion that the countries could be kicked out of the European Union for not complying. Slovakia and Hungary insisted in their lawsuits that the quota mechanism should have been passed unanimously.

Fico says the 2015 plan to relocate 160,000 refugees from Greece and Italy over two years was a temporary solution that will cease to be effective on Sept 26.

Under the emergency scheme, 120,000 relocations were due to take place over two years, ending in September 2017.

Hungary accused the Luxembourg court of making an "outrageous and irresponsible" politically driven decision.

The UN's migration agency reports that 125,860 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea so far this year.

  • Ronnie Bowen