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Europe’s Refugee Emergency Response - Update #23, 12-18 February 2016

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  • At a press briefing in Geneva, UNHCR stressed that solutions to the European emergency were not only possible, but had already been agreed upon by States and now urgently need to be implemented. Stabilization is essential and something for which there is also strong public demand.

  • UNHCR calls for more to be done to reinforce reception capacities at the points of entry to Europe, to allow for the humane and effective accommodation, assistance, registration and security screening of people arriving every day. UNHCR's Director of the Regional Bureau for Europe, Mr. Vincent Cochetel, stated that UNHCR hoped that European Union (EU) Member States would implement at a faster pace all EU-wide measures agreed upon in 2015, including the implementation of hotspots, the relocation process for 160,000 people already in Greece and Italy, and the EUTurkey Joint-Action Plan.

  • At the Munich Security Conference on 12-14 February, the United Nations High Commissioner for -Refugees, Mr. Filippo Grandi, stressed that the strains of displacement are felt by refugees - not just by Europe. He added that 'if Europe organizes itself, it can cope'.