More migrants relocated from Malta to EU countries

Germany is hosting a group of migrants who were relocated through an EU resettlement program, the Maltese government announced on Wednesday.

Without specifying the number of migrants who left Malta to start a new life in Germany, the government said this was the fifth relocation exercise of its kind since September.

In a statement, the government said the relocated migrants will have their asylum claim determined in other member states. The relocation was coordinated with the European Commission, in line with Malta’s calls for the fair sharing of responsibility of irregular migrants reaching Europe’s shores, the government said.

Relocation provides the opportunity to Maltese authorities to reduce the pressure on its migrant reception facilities and manage its asylum backlog. Together with measures to fight people smuggling in the Central Mediterranean and returns, relocation is one of the pillars of the government’s strategy on irregular migration, it said in its statement.

It said other pledges by more European member states for the relocation of migrants are planned to be fulfilled in the near future. Assistance for the relocation was given by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the European Asylum Support Office (EASO). It was co-financed by EU emergency assistance under the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF).

On Sept. 23, the European Commission presented a New Pact on Migration and Asylum, setting out a fairer, more European approach to managing migration and asylum. It aims to put in place a comprehensive and sustainable policy.