"Greece cannot and will not sink refugee boats"

Athens is rejecting accusations by the EU Commission that it is neglecting border protection

Athens has rejected accusations by the EU Commission that it was neglecting border protection. “Of course Greece is protecting its borders,” Deputy Minister for European Affairs Nikos Xydakis wrote in an op-ed piece for German weekly Stern. “Greece, however, cannot and will not sink refugee boats,” he stressed.

The EU Commission said in a report released Wednesday that Greece had “seriously neglected” its obligations to safeguard the EU's external borders. If the report is adopted by a majority of the member states, Greece will have three months to implement actions, EU Commission Vice President Valdis Dombrovskis said. “If the necessary action is not being taken and deficiencies persist, there is a possibility to ... allow member states to temporarily close their borders,” Dombrovskis warned.

The Executive Director of the EU border agency Frontex, Fabrice Leggeri, however, recently told German daily Die Welt in an interview that “border management by itself will not be able to make much of a difference, most of all we have to take care of the root causes why so many migrants are currently pushing towards Europe.” See also our cepInput on the empirical and legal aspects of the refugee crisis.