'The legal fight is over': EU says eastern countries must abide refugee ruling

'The legal fight is over': EU says eastern countries must abide refugee ruling
From CBC - September 12, 2017

Eastern European Union states must drop their resistance and accept their share of refugees who arrived in the bloc, officials and diplomats said on Tuesday after a court ruled they must abide by the quota.

The EU's highest court ruled last week that member states must take in a share of refugees who reach Europe, dismissing complaints by Slovakia and Hungary and reigniting an east-west row that has shaken the bloc's cohesion.

Brussels and other capitals hope member states will respect the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling.

Poland and Hungary are opposed to accepting anybody, their reluctance shared by ex-communist peers Slovakia and the Czech Republic, who have, however, accepted a handful of people under a 2015 EU scheme designed to move 160,000 from Italy and Greece.

"All members of the EU must respect the ruling," Manfred Weber, the head of the of the largest faction in the European Parliament, told a news conference. "The legal fight is over."

"Migration is still a political wound of the political landscape all over Europe . All the reasonable and all the responsible politicians have to go now [toward] a compromise."

No signs of budging from Poland, Hungary

EU officials and diplomats say they will make another push this autumn to try to bridge the divisions. EU interior ministers will debate the matter in Brussels on Wednesday.

However, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has said he will fight on.

Poland, whose nationalist government is now engulfed in spiralling feuds with the bloc, said its migration stance has not changed.


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