Valletta Summit on Migration

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Valletta Summit on Migration
Valletta Conference on Migration
Valletta Summit on Migration logo.png
Logo of the Valletta Summit
Host country Malta
Date 11–12 November 2015
Venue(s) Mediterranean Conference Centre
Cities Valletta
Website consilium.europa.eu
Key points

The Valletta Summit on Migration, also called the Valletta Conference on Migration,[1] was a summit held in Valletta, Malta, on 11–12 November 2015, in which European and African leaders discussed the European migrant crisis. The summit resulted in the EU setting up an Emergency Trust Fund to promote development in Africa, in return for African countries to help out in the crisis.

The summit was held at three venues in Valletta. The opening ceremony was held at Auberge de Castille, while the Mediterranean Conference Centre hosted the main conference. Fort Saint Elmo was used as a media centre. The summit was the largest one ever hosted in Malta,[2] with around 4,000 people attending. The summit was held a few weeks before the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting 2015, which was also held in Malta.[3]

Background

Plaque commemorating the 2015 Summit Meeting on Migration under the Knot Monument

The European migrant crisis began when large numbers of migrants and refugees from various countries came to the European Union and applied for asylum. The term "crisis" has been widely used since April 2015, when a number of boats carrying migrants sank in the Mediterranean Sea, resulting in the deaths of around 1,200 people. Following the shipwreck of 19 April, the European Council held a meeting to discuss the situation of migrants in the Mediterranean Sea. Among the decisions made during this meeting, EU leaders agreed to increase dialogue with the African Union and other countries involved in the migrant crisis by holding a summit in Valletta, Malta.[1]

The summit was meant to include leaders of the countries of origin, transit or destination of the migrants. The heads of state and government of EU member states, the African Union Commission, the ECOWAS Commission, and states parties to the Khartoum and Rabat Processes were all invited to the summit, as were the Secretary-General of the United Nations and representatives from the International Organization for Migration.[1]

The summit

The summit was held at the Mediterranean Conference Centre in Valletta, Malta.

The Valletta Summit began with an opening ceremony in front of Auberge de Castille, the Office of the Prime Minister of Malta. A monument was unveiled for the occasion.[4] After the ceremony was over, the leaders were transferred to the Mediterranean Conference Centre.[5]

The summit itself began at 6:30 p.m. with a speech by Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat. On the first day, the leaders discussed a situation in which African countries would help to reduce migration across the Mediterranean, with the EU giving Africans better access to Europe in return.[2] According to Muscat, the meeting was "less confrontational than expected".[6]

On 12 November, the European and African leaders signed an agreement to set up an Emergency Trust Fund to help development in African countries as well as to encourage those countries to take back migrants who arrived in Europe. The fund pledged €1.8 billion in aid, with other development assistance of €20 billion every year.[7] The leaders also pledged action to improve the situation in the Horn of Africa, the Sahel, Lake Chad and other parts of Africa to reduce the flow of refugees. They also promised to promote regular migration channels and implement policies for integrating migrants into society.[6]

The summit ended with a Final Declaration and an Action Plan. Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council, said that the migrant crisis was a "race against time" to save the Schengen Agreement.[7]

Aftermath

An informal summit of EU leaders was held just after the Valletta Summit ended. The key points discussed included the threat to the Schengen Area, securing Europe's external border and relations with Turkey.[8]

In July 2016, Minister for Home Affairs and National Security Carmelo Abela announced that the Maltese government is planning a follow-up meeting to the Valletta Summit.[9]

Participants

The leaders who took part in the Valletta Summit are listed in the table below. Sudan was represented by its foreign minister as President Omar al-Bashir could not travel to Malta due to an international arrest warrant. Poland was only represented by an undersecretary of state due to a clash with the first sitting of the country's new parliament.[10]

Countries[11]
Member Represented by Title
 Albania Edi Rama Prime Minister
 Algeria Abdelmalek Sellal Prime Minister
 Austria Werner Faymann Chancellor
 Belgium Charles Michel Prime Minister
 Benin Thomas Boni Yayi President
 Bosnia and Herzegovina- Dragan Covic Chairman of the Presidency
 Botswana Ian Khama President
 Bulgaria Rosen Plevneliev President
 Burkina Faso Michel Kafando President
 Burundi Pierre Nkurunziza President
 Cabo Verde Jorge Carlos Fonseca President
 Central African Republic Daniel Emery Dede Ambassador to the European Union
 Chad Idriss Déby President
 Congo Jean-Claude Gakosso Minister of Foreign Affairs
 Côte d'Ivoire Alassane Ouattara President
 Croatia Vesna Pusić Deputy Prime Minister
 Cyprus Socrates Chasikos Minister for Interior
 Czech Republic Milos Zeman President
 Denmark Lars Løkke Rasmussen Prime Minister
 Djibouti Hassan Omar Mohamed Bourhano Minister for Interior
 Egypt Sameh Shoukry Minister for Foreign Affairs
 Equatorial Guinea Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo President
 Eritrea Osman Saleh Mohammed Minister for Foreign Affairs
 Estonia Taavi Rõivas Prime Minister
 Ethiopia Hailemariam Desalegn Prime Minister
 Finland Sauli Niinisto President
 France François Hollande President
 Gabon Ali Bongo Ondimba President
 Gambia Abdoulie Jose Trade Minister
 Germany Angela Merkel Chancellor
 Ghana John Dramani Mahama President
 Greece Alexis Tsipras Prime Minister
 Guinea Alpha Condé President
 Guinea-Bissau Suzi Carla Barbosa Minister for Cooperation
 Hungary Viktor Orbán Prime Minister
 Iceland Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson Prime Minister
 Ireland Frances Fitzgerald Minister for Justice and Equality
 Italy Matteo Renzi Prime Minister
 Kenya Joseph Ole Nkaissery Secretary General
 Latvia Edgars Rinkēvičs Minister for Foreign Affairs
 Liberia Joseph Boakai Vice President
 Libya Abdourhman A. M. Alahirish Deputy Prime Minister
 Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė President
 Luxembourg Xavier Bettel Prime Minister
 Mali Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta President
 Malta Joseph Muscat Prime Minister
 Mauritania Abdalla Ahmedou Minister for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation
 Monaco Albert II Prince
 Montenegro Filip Vujanovic President
 Morocco Salaheddine Mezouar Minister for Foreign Affairs
 Netherlands Mark Rutte Prime Minister
 Niger Mahamadou Issoufou President
 Nigeria Abubakar Gusau Magaji Minister for Defence
 Norway Erna Solberg Prime Minister
 Poland Katarzyna Kacperczyk Undersecretary of State
 Portugal Pedro Passos Coelho Prime Minister
 Romania Klaus Iohannis President
 Rwanda Paul Kagame President of Rwanda
 Senegal Macky Sall President
 Sierra Leone Samura Kamara Foreign Minister
 Slovakia Andrej Kiska President
 Slovenia Miro Cerar Prime Minister
 Somalia Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke Prime Minister
 South Sudan Salva Kiir Mayardit President
 Spain Mariano Rajoy Prime Minister
 Sudan Ibrahim Ghandour Minister of Foreign Affairs
 Sweden Stefan Löfven Prime Minister
  Switzerland Simonetta Sommaruga President
 Togo Komlan Edo Robert Dussey Minister of Foreign Affairs, Cooperation and African Integration
 Tunisia Habib Essid Prime Minister
 Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan President
 United Kingdom David Cameron Prime Minister
Organizations[11]
Member Represented by Title
European Union European Council Donald Tusk President
European Union European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker President
European Union European Parliament Martin Schulz President
  African Union Commission Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma Chairperson
  Economic Community of West African States Kadré Désiré Ouedraogo President
European Union Justice and Home Affairs Council Jean Asselborn Chairman/Minister
European Union European External Action Service Federica Mogherini High Representative
European Union European Commission Neven Mimica European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development
European Union Council of the European Union Jeppe Tranholm-Mikkelsen Secretary General
European Union European Asylum Support Office José Carreira Executive Director ad interim
United Nations United Nations Secretariat Jan Eliasson Deputy Secretary General
United Nations United Nations Secretariat Peter Sutherland Special Representative of the Secretary General for Migration and Development
United Nations United Nations Development Programme Helen Clark Administrator
United Nations United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres High Commissioner
  Union for the Mediterranean Fathallah Sijilmassi Secretary General
  Europol Oldřich Martinů Deputy Director of Governance
  Frontex Hendrik Weijermans Head of External Relations
International Centre for Migration Policy Development Michael Spindelegger Director General
  Intergovernmental Authority on Development Fathia Alouan
  Interpol Jürgen Stock Secretary General
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies Garry Conille Under Sec. Gen. Programme and Operation
  International Organization for Migration William L. Swing Director General
 Arab League Talal Shubailat Ambassador, League of Arab States Representative
Organisation internationale de la Francophonie Michaëlle Jean Secretary General
 Sovereign Military Order of Malta Stefano Ronca Diplomatic Counsellor to the Grand Chancellor
  Norwegian Refugee Council Valerie Ceccherini EU Advocacy Adviser
  MADE AFRICA Odile Faye Coordinator

Monument

The Knot monument in Castille Square, Valletta

A monument commemorating the summit was erected in Valletta's Castille Square, which had just been refurbished. The monument is called The Knot, and it symbolizes unity between Europe and Africa, as well as Malta's geographic position between the two continents. The monument was designed by the artist Vince Briffa,[12] and was carved from Carrara marble.[13]

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c "Valletta Conference on Migration (Malta, 11–12 November 2015) – Orientation debate" (PDF). statewatch.org. Council of the European Union. 30 June 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Grech, Herman (11 November 2015). "Live commentary: Valletta Summit". Times of Malta. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  3. ^ Attard, Rachel (31 October 2015). "8,000 people, many heads of state participating in Valletta Summit on Migration and CHOGM". The Malta Independent. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  4. ^ "Castille Square dazzles at the Valletta Summit opening ceremony". Bay Network. 11 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  5. ^ Sansone, Kurt (11 November 2015). "Valletta Summit: EU-Africa leaders meet amid differences". Times of Malta. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  6. ^ a b Grech, Herman (12 November 2015). "Live commentary: Valletta summit – the final day". Times of Malta. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  7. ^ a b "Migration summit: "We are in a race against time to save Schengen" – Tusk". Times of Malta. 12 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  8. ^ "EU informal summit closes: 'We need to regain control of the external border as a precondition for European migration policy -Tusk". Times of Malta. 12 November 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  9. ^ "Malta wants a Valletta Summit follow-up meeting". Times of Malta. 19 July 2016. Retrieved 19 July 2016. 
  10. ^ Ganado, Philip Leone. "Poland missing from summit". Times of Malta. Retrieved 16 November 2015. 
  11. ^ a b "Participants". consilium.europa.eu. Retrieved 16 November 2015. 
  12. ^ "New monument for Castille Square". Times of Malta. 25 October 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 
  13. ^ "New monument in Castille Square to mark upcoming Valletta Summit for Migration". The Malta Independent. 25 October 2015. Retrieved 12 November 2015. 

External links

  • Action Plan of the Valletta Summit on Migration


Coordinates: 35°53′58.2″N 14°31′4.8″E / 35.899500°N 14.518000°E / 35.899500; 14.518000

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