Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2010-12-13-Speech-1-082"

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"Mr President, the increase in asylum applications on behalf of citizens of Serbia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia requires measures protecting the amendment of Regulation (EC) No 539/2001. Visas are an instrument included in the framework of immigration policies; their purpose is to legalise the entry and temporary stay in a country where the applicant is neither a non-national nor a resident. Regulation (EC) No 539/2001 provides for an evaluation mechanism for visa extension, in which certain requirements in relation to illegal immigration, public order and security, the Union’s external relations, territorial cohesion and the principle of reciprocity must be fulfilled. This mechanism could also function in the opposite direction. Asylum, on the other hand, is an instrument of protection that cannot be used incorrectly. It should be pointed out that the purpose of the European Union’s common policy in this area is to preserve the integrity of asylum as an instrument of protection for the persecuted, prioritising the principles of the Geneva Convention and the New York Protocol, applying common criteria for the identification of people who genuinely require international protection and a guaranteed common minimum level of benefits in all Member States for the welfare of those people. Asylum is therefore an instrument of humanitarianism and solidarity and, hence, exclusive in its purpose and nature. This is why it is important that the European Union reacts and helps the Serbian and Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonian authorities to adopt sufficient measures regarding the requirements that must be fulfilled to benefit from refugee status or subsidiary protection status, thereby avoiding improper or fraudulent use of them."@en1

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