Leaders’ Statement on Western Balkan Route

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at an European leader's meeting on refugee flows along the Western Balkans route at the European Commission in Brussels on October 25, 2015. European Union and Balkan leaders faced a make-or-break summit today on the deepening refugee crisis after three frontline states threatened to close their borders if their EU peers stopped accepting migrants. AFP PHOTO / EMMANUEL DUNAND

Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives at an European leader’s meeting on refugee flows along the Western Balkans route at the European Commission in Brussels on October 25, 2015. European Union and Balkan leaders faced a make-or-break summit today on the deepening refugee crisis after three frontline states threatened to close their borders if their EU peers stopped accepting migrants. AFP PHOTO / EMMANUEL DUNAND

Leaders’ Meeting on the Western Balkans Route                                   

Draft Leaders’ Statement

 

A parody version of this statement can be found here: http://www.statewatch.org/news/2015/oct/eu-com-meeting-balkans-leders-meeting-draft.pdf

We all have very nice countries. All of them have rivers, and some of them also have coastlines. One of the difficulties we have is that people come in and out of our countries, but not at equal rates.

The numbers would not bother us so much, but some of the people going in and out have languages and religions of which we are not fond. Also they occasionally suffer in ways that are picturesque, which causes difficulties for us in international media.

There are wealthier countries that like the people who come in and out of our countries even less than we do. These are the countries the people want to go to, but they have other business that must be more important.

Permanent exchange of information

1./ We pledge to talk about each other to tabloid media. Those Leaders who do not have theatrical vocal training will mostly refrain from imitating cartoon voices. We will also pretend to talk at each other, while facing nearby walls.

Supporting refugees and providing shelter

2./ We pledge to continually take credit for what civil society organizations are doing to help people, particularly in those instances where we are not doing it.

3./ Did we say austerity? Austerity.

Managing the migration flows together

4./ Leaders pledge to comply with the EU Civil Protection Mechanism at moments when it is convenient or opportune to do so.

5./ Leaders confirm that once people are on a field somewhere near a border, it’s Mad Max time.

Secondary Movements

6./ Waving people through borders is not acceptable. Leaders pledge to form an opinion on forced aimless wandering and barbed wire gymnastics.

Border Management

7./ Slovenia came up with something they are calling the Rapid Border Intervention Team (RABIT) mechanism. That’s an animal acronym. Aren’t Slovenians cute?

8./ You think only Slovenians can come up with animal acronyms? How about this? Dual Opportunistic Refugee Manipulation in the Interest of Confusion Enhancement (DORMICE). Or maybe you prefer Thinking Refugees are Outside of Universal Treaties (TROUT). Anyone can do this, it’s easy.

Tackling smuggling

9./ What? Take profit-bearing business away from our taxis and railways?

Monitoring

10./ When things get really tense, Leaders will announce their intention in principle to hold another meeting two weeks later.

Leaders call attention to having heard of the shared European values of human rights, protection of the vulnerable, legal and social care, and the freedom of movement. They expect to get around to these one day.