MP Mitsotakis says no more “open borders” with new asylum law

Greek MPs are debating the new law in parliament

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis outlined in his speech to the House the main principles of the asylum bill, making it clear that he would no longer tolerate the shady role of NGOs operating in the Aegean Sea.

Mitsotakis went on to reiterate the bill would include provisions for the distinction between refugees and economic migrants while highlighting the European dimension of the problem and the rules by which asylum seekers will be integrated into our country.

“Today the draft law that will become the law of the state ending a huge deficiency. Greece has a clear, structured and functioning asylum system” he said.

In his speech, the Greek PM accused the previous government of SYRIZA of incompetence, claiming the asylum process was in a state of total paralysis, while he said the previous government allowed the unchecked operation of NGOs.

According to the PM, the new law would simplify and greatly expedite the granting of asylum to real refugees by giving preference to children while providing insurance and protection. It would also include the protection of those in need under the auspices of the competent authorities. “Those who break the rules have no place in our country,” he said.

On his part, the leader of major opposition party SYRIZA, Alexis Tsipras accused the PM of doublespeak and being in the dilemma of using rhetoric from the left in his opening speech, but having to contend and balance out far-right xenophobic voices within his party.