Home affairs ministers to discuss more effective return procedures

Ministry of the Interior
Publication date 4.12.2023 14.32 | Published in English on 4.12.2023 at 15.43
Press release

The EU home affairs ministers will gather in Brussels on 5 December for a meeting of the Justice and Home Affairs Council. Items on the agenda for the meeting include issues related to the Schengen area, improving the efficiency of procedures to return migrants, and the implications of the situation in the Middle East for the EU’s internal security.

Finland will be represented at the meeting by Minister of the Interior Mari Rantanen, who will update her colleagues on the situation at Finland's eastern border.

“We need an EU-level mechanism to temporarily suspend the reception of asylum applications in situations where migration and third-country nationals are being used as instruments for hybrid influencing. This is what is happening at Finland’s eastern border right now,” she says.

Return procedures must be improved both nationally and at the EU level

The ministers will discuss ways to improve the efficiency of procedures to return rejected asylum applicants. Finland’s view is that, overall, the EU system should be streamlined both internally and externally (through cooperation with third countries).

Return procedures should function better, and it is particularly important to ensure that individuals who pose security threats can be effectively returned. In its Government Programme, Finland has made significant investments in improving the efficiency of measures at the national level.

“The figures on irregular migration in the Schengen area are enormous, and only a fraction of decisions on refusal of entry have led to return. We must move from words to actions when it comes to curbing migration and improving the effectiveness of return procedures,” says Minister Rantanen.

Laura Yli-Vakkuri, Director General, tel. +358 40 720 22 16, [email protected]
Communications Unit, Ministry of the Interior, [email protected] (requests for interviews with the Minister)