European Council decides on emergency support for Greece
The Council of the European Union on Wednesday agreed on an emergency support mechanism to help Greece in response to the humanitarian situation caused by the refugee crisis, according to a European Council press release.
This will enable the EU to help Greece and other affected member states to address the humanitarian needs of the large numbers of arrivals of men, women, and children, aiming to meet the basic needs of refugees by providing food, shelter, water, medicine and other necessities, the announcement said.
“This is a very rapid and practical expression of the EU's solidarity with Greece, which implements a commitment of the European Council. The Netherlands Presidency will continue to do its utmost to ensure that the General Affairs Council of 15 March adopts the regulation,” said Dutch Foreign Minister Bert Koenders, the Council's president.
The Council, together with the European Parliament, also needs to adopt a draft amending budget to mobilise the necessary resources from the 2016 EU budget. The Commission is expected to propose a draft amending budget on 10 March 2016.
The Commission estimates that a total of 700 million euros will be needed in 2016-2018 to address the needs of refugees, of which 300 million euros will be required in 2016.