Germany 'open' to EU special refugee summit: govt spokesman

9th September 2015, Comments 0 comments

Germany is open to the idea of an extraordinary European Union summit on the record numbers of refugees coming to the 28-nation bloc, a government spokesman said Wednesday.

"Of course the government is open" to the idea, said Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert, adding it was up to EU president Donald Tusk to call such a meeting.

Seibert pointed to an upcoming meeting of EU interior and justice ministers and said "everything will be decided in light of this meeting".

Germany, the EU's most populous nation and biggest economy, has accepted by far the largest number of refugees, expected to reach 800,000 this year.

Merkel has urged the EU to agree to a proportional distribution of refugees with no limits on actual numbers, going much further than plans unveiled by the European Commission Wednesday.

"We need a binding agreement on the binding distribution of refugees according to fair criteria between member states," she told parliament earlier on Wednesday.

EU interior ministers, meeting on September 14, are to discuss proposals by European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker to relocate 160,000 refugees from swamped border states.

They comprise 120,000 refugees under a new emergency relocation scheme and 40,000 under a plan that Juncker unveiled in May.


© 2015 AFP

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