Top EU court throws out Slovakia and Hungary's action against migrant relocation

2015 after the border was blocked by the Hungarian border police. Credit Sergey Ponomarev for The New Y

2015 after the border was blocked by the Hungarian border police. Credit Sergey Ponomarev for The New Y

As you know, the program of distribution of refugees, adopted in September 2015 by a majority of member States of the European Union, provided for the distribution of 160 thousand asylum seekers among European Union countries.

The ECJ's ruling said: 'The court dismisses the actions brought by Slovakia and Hungary against the provisional mechanism for the mandatory relocation of asylum seekers.

The Mediterranean migrant crisis which prompted mandatory quotas in 2015 for relocating asylum seekers from Greece and Italy has receded, easing immediate pressure to force compliance on nationalist leaders who are making electoral capital from lambasting the European Union while benefiting from Brussels' subsidies.

Hungary and Poland have refused to accept any of the refugees, while Slovakia has taken in only a few.

In a letter obtained by POLITICO, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker (pictured) turned down the demand for such financial assistance, and responded to Orban by reminding him that in 2015, at the height of the migrant crisis, "Hungary chose to reject this offer of concrete solidarity, declining the possibility to benefit from relocation of up to 54,000 persons and made a decision to return almost 4 million euro of EU funds pre-paid by the Commission to Hungary".

Human rights groups have criticized Hungary and Poland for their reluctance to take in any refugees. Slovakia and the Czech Republic have only taken in a handful.

They also say that opening their borders to refugees from migrants from war-torn countries such as Syria could leave them open to the threat of terrorism.

"ECJ confirms relocation scheme valid".

Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said the ruling was "outrageous and irresponsible", the Associated Press reports, and vowed Hungary would fight any attempts to resettle migrants there without government approval.

The argument comes after months of increasingly hostile political debate between Eastern European countries and Brussels over its handling of the crisis.

"Today's ruling shows that no country can hide from their responsibilities to refugees", Iverna McGowan, Director of Amnesty's European Institutions Office, said in a statement.

EU Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos said on Wednesday that arrangement "continues to work and deliver results", the AP reports.

"Our position on quotas does not change", Prime Minister Robert Fico said.

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