Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki recently criticized the proposed EU migration overhaul by sharing a video that contrasted scenes of violent protests in France with peaceful cities in Poland. The video, uploaded on Morawiecki’s Twitter page, showcased French streets engulfed in flames and rioters smashing store windows, while contrasting them with peaceful and orderly Polish cities. The caption in the video stated, “We do not want such scenes on Polish streets.”
This video upload coincided with Morawiecki’s strong criticism of a migration overhaul proposal that offers EU members three options: accept relocated asylum seekers, pay a fee for each rejected applicant, or provide financial support for operational assistance. Morawiecki argued that by embracing this migration reform, Europe is encouraging smugglers to send even more people. He stated, “If we invite 30,000, then 300,000 will come. If we invite a million, 30 million will come. It’s an endless spiral.” He believed that open borders would not only empower criminals but also increase the risk of terrorism in Europe.
Instead, Morawiecki proposed his own plan called “Europe of Secure Borders.” His plan focuses on investing more in guarding the EU’s external borders and supporting the development of countries that are the source of mass migration. It also includes reducing social benefits for individuals from outside the EU and cracking down on smugglers and the black market. Morawiecki believes that Poland is an example of a successful migration policy, and his plan aims to build on that success.
The EU has faced challenges in managing the influx of migrants for several years. According to Frontex data, there were 330,000 illegal border crossings at the EU’s external border in 2022, the highest number since 2016, and a 64% increase from the previous year. These statistics highlight the pressing need for effective migration policies.
Morawiecki’s video upload and his proposed plan demonstrate Poland’s firm stance on migration. By showcasing the contrasting scenes between France and Poland, he aims to emphasize the importance of secure borders and the potential consequences of a lenient migration policy. His plan seeks to address these concerns by investing in border security, supporting development in source countries, and cracking down on smuggling activities.
Poland’s position on migration aligns with Hungary, both of which have been blocking the EU migration overhaul proposal. These countries argue that the proposed reforms do not adequately address security concerns and could lead to further challenges in managing migration flows.
It remains to be seen how the EU will address these concerns and find common ground among member states regarding migration policies. As the migration crisis continues to unfold, the need for comprehensive and effective solutions becomes increasingly urgent.