EU helps Slovenia cope with refugee crisis

Ahead of the Leaders Meeting on the Western Balkans Migration Route on 25 October, Commissioners Dimitris Avramopoulos and Violeta Bulc were yesterday in Ljubljana to offer EU technical and financial support and assistance to Slovenia as it copes with a large number of arrivals. The Commissioners met with Prime Minister Miro Cerar, Foreign Affairs Minister Karl Erjavec and Minister of Interior Affairs Vesna Gyrks nidar who informed them about the situation on the ground.

Migration and Home Affairs Commissioner, Dimitris Avramopoulos said: "The Commission stands by Slovenia and is here to help. We need a joint European response, and this means that everyone needs to play by the rules. The Leaders meeting this Sunday, called by President Juncker, is the response to the Slovenian request for a coordinated approach, mediated by Commission."

Shortly after the visit, Slovenia activated the EU's Civil Protection Mechanism for material support such as blankets, sleeping bags, winter tents, beds and sanitary equipment to help cope with the arrivals of large numbers of refugees and asylum seekers in the country. The European Commission's Emergency Response Coordination Centre (ERCC) is working closely with the Slovenian authorities and the other participating states in the Mechanism to coordinate a swift response to the request.

"The EU stands with Slovenia at this time of need. Member States can make a real difference by providing practical support to help the most vulnerable. As temperatures drop with winter approaching, emergency supplies will be more important than ever," said EU Commissioner for Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Management, Christos Stylianides.

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