19 November 2021: Speaking after European Movement International discussions on the crisis on the Belarus-EU border, Noelle O Connell, Vice President of EM International and CEO of EM Ireland stated the organisation’s position,
“The humanitarian crisis occurring on the Belarus-European Union border is a complicated and multifaceted challenge. The first requirement is a joint and coordinated response by the EU and its Member States. That response should be proportionate, and all actions taken, especially on the ground, should abide by international treaties and adhere to European fundamental values, not least the respect for human rights.
“We must also recognise that mass population movement due to conflict, climate change, socio-political and economic factors is not new, and it will not abide any time soon. To date, the EU has proven unable to deal with this challenge. Consequently, the authoritarian regime in Minsk is exploiting the EU’s weakness by using vulnerable human beings to exert pressure and to blackmail the EU.
“Therefore, this crisis offers a timely reminder that the EU must redouble its efforts towards the establishment of a common, fully-fledged migration and asylum policy, based on solidarity, security and the respect of refugee and migrant rights. At the same time, it must strengthen its capacity to respond to geopolitical events and speak with one voice.
“European Movement Ireland welcomes the strong support of the Irish Government for further sanctions against relevant Belarussian individuals and entities.”
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