March 27, 2024
Vast majority of the EU’s Asylum and Migration Pact is not in Ireland’s interests – Pa Daly TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Justice, Pa Daly TD, has said that ‘the vast majority of measures contained in the EU’s Asylum and Migration Pact are not in Ireland’s interests.’

He has said that Ireland can better create a fair, efficient and enforced immigration system by exercising its opt-out from a majority of the pact’s proposals.

Teachta Daly said:

“Sinn Féin are opposed to open borders. We believe that Ireland needs a well-managed migration system – one that is fair, efficient and enforced.

“Our international protection system, in particular, is in need of a major overhaul.

“The EU’s Asylum and Migration Pact is a mixed bag of seven proposals. Alongside Denmark, we are the only country with the opportunity to remain outside all or some of these EU measures. We should use that ability to opt-out, as is our right.

“We are strongly of the view that opting-into all or most of them would not be in Ireland’s best interests.

“Some decisions are better taken locally and one size does not fit all. We want a system that recognises each Member State is different and faces different pressures at any given time. For example, the capacity constraints in terms of accommodation, health services and school places are particularly grave here in Ireland.
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“In the European Parliament and in the Oireachtas, Sinn Féin will support two measures that are in the best interests of Ireland, which would aid us to transform our asylum system into one that is fair, efficient and enforced and we will oppose opting-into the measures that are not helpful and which would see the EU over-step it’s remit into areas of Irish sovereignty.

“We simply do not have enough beds in our IPAS system to continue accommodating people who should be in other EU countries. This misuse of beds has resulted in hundreds of migrants sleeping in tents on our streets. This is not sustainable. Therefore, we support opting-in to the Asylum and Migration Management Regulation because it facilitates the return of people who seek to make an asylum application here to the first country where an international protection applicant has made a claim.

“We also support opting into the Eurodac Regulation because participation in this fingerprint database is necessary in order to conduct checks and vetting. It may also help to respond to child trafficking at a time when the numbers of unaccompanied minors is rising.

“We oppose opting-into the remainder of the measures. They are better dealt with at a national level. This is an important issue of sovereignty. It must be for an Irish government to decide on key aspects of our immigration system, including rejecting unsuccessful applicants sooner, compiling our list of safe countries so those who are not genuine asylum seekers can be rejected and to decide what countries Ireland should take refugees from. These are not matters for the EU to dictate to us.”

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