Prime Minister Erna Solberg thinks a good return agreement may curb the influx of refugees to Europe, but says Norway still has to be prepared for many arrivals.
Money has been set aside in the national budget to account for up to 33,000 asylum arrivals this year, and no significant changes will be made, Solberg told the newspaper VG.
– It’s very uncertain how many people will come to Norway. We have to be in a state of readiness for major arrivals and make plans that can be rapidly implemented. There may still be additional waves of influx of asylum seekers , where Norway will be the first country where the asylum seekers apply for asylum, the Prime Minister said.
She is not allowed to take part when the EU heads of state and government will be meeting Turkish authorities on Thursday in order to put in place the conditions for an agreement on the return of migrants who cross the Aegean Sea to Greece illegally. She will nevertheless travel to Brussels to meet several EU heads when the Conservative European sister party the European People’s Party holds a preliminary meeting.
Both the UN and the Council of Europe have said that collective deportation constitutes a violation of international law, but EU president Donald Tusk has made assurances that everyone will get an individual assessment. Solberg expects that an agreement will safeguard the basic human rights.
– We expect that the EU will respect the European human rights. But much is still unclear, although we can now see the main lines of the agreement, she said.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today