Flows of people across Balkans. Greece excluded from meeting in Vienna and divisions keep on marking the EU.

A meeting has been held today in Vienna on the “migrant crisis in the Balkans”. Representatives of different countries of the region have been invited, but Athens has been – surprisingly? – excluded.

The Austrian Minister for Foreign Affairs, “stood up today for the decision of his Government not to invite Greece”. Sebastian Kurz, in fact, “accused Athens of not having the will to reduce” the amount of “refugee arrivals from Middle East” (EFE)

Greece complained about “its exclusion from the meeting” and Mr Kurz answered saying that, in his opinion, there is a “lack” of intention “to significantly reduce the flow of refugees” (ibidem).

For the meeting, Sebastian Kurz and the Austrian Minister of the Interior Johanna Mikl-Leitner “invited” their “counterparts from Albania, Bosnia, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia”, explained yesterday la Repubblica.it, highlighting as – in addition to Greece – the European Commission and the Netherlands EU Presidency have been “cut out” (ibidem).

It seems that autonomous and non-coordinated initiatives by different member states of the EU continue to replace a real common approach, needed to concretely deal with the complex issues represented by important flows of migrants and refugees.

Indeed, an outcome of today meeting is a strengthened “cooperation” between “Austria and nine countries of Western Balkans” in order to slow migrants arrival across the “Balkan route” (EFE), whereas the European Union keeps on appearing divided.


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