European politicians have lashed out against Donald Trump's Muslim ban
Brussels politicians launched a savage attack on the Republican’s decision to temporarily halt immigration from seven Muslim majority countries as relations between the EU and America plunge into the deep freeze.
And they were scarcely less scaring about their own bloc’s attempts to bring immigration under control, saying eurocrats should not sign deals with countries like Turkey to keep out economic migrants.
Enraged MEPs made the explosive remarks in a dynamite resolution passed yesterday by members of the EU Parliament’s foreign affairs committee sitting in Brussels.
In the strongly worded document they said Mr Trump’s policy "fuels anti-immigration and xenophobic discourses" and "seriously undermine current global efforts towards a fair international sharing of responsibilities for refugees”.
MEPs also savaged the EU over its own migration policies
Spanish MEP Elena Valenciano led the attacks
They also argued that the ban, which affects people travelling from seven Middle Eastern and African countries, may “not be in accordance with international law” and urged EU leaders to stand up to the president.
Mr Trump’s executive order – which has been dubbed a ‘Muslim ban’ by many – prevents nationals from Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Iraq from visiting the US for at least three months.
The under-fire president has insisted it is to protect America from terror attacks, although critics have pointed out no such atrocities have been committed by people arriving from the seven countries.
Reading out a statement agreed by the committee, Spanish MEP Elena Valenciano said: “The committee expresses strong concern about the recent decision by the US administration to temporarily ban citizens of seven Muslim majority countries from entering the country and temporarily suspend the US refugee system.
“It believes that this kind of discriminatory decision fuels anti-immigration and xenophobic discourse, may not be in accordance with international law instruments such as the Geneva convention and can seriously undermine current global effort towards a fair international sharing of responsibility for refugees.
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“We call on the EU and its member states to show a strong common position in defending the international protection system and the legal security of all affected populations particularly EU citizens.”
This kind of discriminatory decision fuels anti-immigration and xenophobic discourse
Spanish MEP Elena Valenciano
The statement adds to an already heated row raging between the EU and the new US administration, which has taken a highly critical stance towards the Brussels bloc in stark contrast to Barack Obama’s cosy relationship.
However the politicians did not only reserve their criticism for Mr Trump, also choosing to open fire on their own bloc’s leadership over its handling of Europe’s migration crisis.
They railed against a pact signed with Turkey, which has been hailed as a success by eurocrats and has massively reduced illegal migration into Greece, branding it un-European.
And they warned the EU Commission not to seek similar deals with countries such as Libya and Tunisia – a solution being pressed by Italy to stem the flow of people crossing the Mediterranean.
The UK Reacts To Trump's 'Muslim' Travel Ban
Mon, January 30, 2017
President Trump signed an executive order banning immigration to the USA from seven 'muslim' countries. This led to protests across America and, now, the UK.
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People demonstrate during a protest at Downing Street in central London against US President Donald Trump's controversial travel ban on refugees and people from seven mainly-Muslim countries
Their statement read: "EU assistance and cooperation must be unconditional and should not incentivise third countries to cooperate on readmission of irregular migrants, to forcibly deter people from moving, or to stop flows to Europe.”
MEPs also called for a far greater say in how such border deals are struck – a development which would bring more democratic oversight but could weaken the EU’s ability to act decisively.
The resolution, which was voted on yesterday, was passed by 43 votes to 16, with nine abstentions.