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​Berlin calls for solidarity in Europe

· ​Managing the crisis of immigration ·

Every country in Europe should share equally with Italy in welcoming immigrants. If this doesn't happen “it would be natural to raise the issue of the Schengen Agreement” and question the system of the free movement of persons. This was the key point of Angela Merkel's message yesterday as border tensions in Europe increases. The German Chancellor's words came just a few hours before yet another tragedy in the Mediterranean. Today an Italian Naval ship, approximately 50 miles off the coast of Libya, found the bodies of four migrants. During the operation 112 people were saved. “There is broad agreement”, said Merkel, “that the burden of migrants in Italy should be reduced” and distributed thoughout European countries. “If Europe fails on the issue of refugees, if it breaks the link with universal civil rights”, the Chancellor said, “the Europe that we wanted would no longer exist”. It's not fair "for only three or four countries toabsorb nearly all refugees”. For the moment Brussels seems to agree with Germany. The Vice President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans, underlined yesterday that all countries must adopt the same laws on requests for asylum. “We must quickly come to an agreement on European laws on asylum requests”, Timmermans warned in Calais, the city in northern France where thousands of migrants are camped out in the hopes of reaching Great Britain. Europe will never, he assured, “abandon anyone who is in need of protection”.

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St. Peter’s Square

Nov. 17, 2018

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