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New proposals announced today by the European Commission to address the global refugee crisis will make steps towards protecting refugees but will not solve it in the long nor short term, said Amnesty International. Responding to the announcement, Acting Director for Amnesty International’s European Institutions Office, Iverna McGowan said:

"While the proposals published by the commission today will help to address the refugee crisis, they certainly will not solve it – neither in the short-term nor the long-term. EU member states must work with the commission to implement a much more ambitious overhaul of the EU's asylum system – based on signficantly enhanced assistance to front-line member states to receive and process asylum-seekers and mutual recognition of refugee status within the Union. Member states should be looking to increase safe routes into the EU, not safe countries to send them back to."

Ahead of the commission announcement, Amnesty International released its Agenda for Europe calling for a Union of Protection for Refugees. The agenda sets out the urgently needed changes in the EU’s approach to the escalating refugee crisis ahead of the extraordinary Justice and Home Affairs Council on September 14.