The problem we are facing today is the inflow of migrants rather than refugees, compared to 2015, Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis stressed, answering in the context of the “Prime Minister’s Hour” in the Parliament in a question by MePA25 Chairman Yiannis Varoufakis, titled: “Closing down of Moria and Inland Borders”.
Most of those who enter Greece today have a profile of economic migrants and not refugees. Only 2% are Syrians, Mr Mitsotakis said.
In his answer, Yiannis Varoufakis said that there is no doubt that the migration crisis is a European crisis and the problems adding that “if we embrace immigrant children we will become the best Greeks of the next decade”.
In response, Kyriakos Mitsotakis said he was taken aback by the response of the MePA25 leader, attributing to Yiannis Varoufakis a lack of knowledge of international law.
“The concept of asylum is a personalized act. By your own logic there should be no border control and asylum procedure because refugees and immigrants are one and the same. You suggest that we accept everyone without rules. With this government there is no way to do that. We don’t want fences either. We want rules and this is done by guarding the borders. When someone enters the country illegally, there is a reason he does so. When he is found to be in need there will be a framework for this. The truly oppressed will know that they will find shelter”, Mr Mitsotakis said.
There should be penalties for those European countries that do not accept immigrants
PM Mitsotakis continued: “If Europe wants to make a policy of reinforcing its demographic problem, there are ways to do it, but it will do so with rules. You mentioned the Statue of Liberty. When the immigrants saw the Statue, they knew at the same time that they would go to the island of Elysus to be recorded and examined. Don’t compare a country with huge land built by immigrants to Greece. You mentioned Australia, which is a liberal country that respects human rights. There is no way an illegal vessel can reach the Australian coast. They are not inhumane but they want to break the traffickers’ networks and the only way is to know that those who pay huge sums -and are not refugees- will lose their money. There are areas of Afghanistan that do not allow the return of these people”.
Kyriakos Mitsotakis also criticized the European Union for not showing solidarity “because many hide and say ‘let the problem be managed by Greece or Italy and I refer to the Visegrad countries”.
About the agreement with Turkey, Mr Mitsotakis criticized the SYRIZA government by saying that “if there is a problem with the agreement, it is not only Turkey but its our country as well. Ask your ex-comrades why they were not repatriating them and they were keeping them locked up here just for some people to play the human rights activists. The Agreement exists, it has problems, it needs to be updated”.“Turkey should realize that it cannot blackmail by pressing on this issue and leveraging people’s drama to blackmail the EU”, the Prime Minister said.Concluding his answer, Kyriakos Mitsotakis said: “Greece can agree with Turkey on a mutually acceptable solution. Your own world Mr Varoufakis where Greece is the host of every oppressed and paradise that everyone finds refuge in, I leave it only in your imagination. Our government has another plan”.