The Regional Governor of Attica, Ms Rena Dourou, participated in the International Forum on the reception and integration of refugees in the EU, held in Barcelona on the 3 May 2016. While attending Part I of the Morning session : Europe, facing the refugee crisis, the Regional Governor of Attica stressed, inter alia, the urgent need for ‘the European Union to adopt a long-lasting refugee and asylum policy based on a common approach, as well as on effective, equitable and fair sharing of responsibility’. ‘This is the only way in which the EU will succeed in meeting the fundamental challenge of its credibility, especially in the eyes of the young people’, stated Ms Rena Dourou, thereby describing the current situation as a ‘challenge’. ‘This is not a random term, it means opportunities for our societies: according to international organisations, such as the United Nations, the European Parliament, the International Organisation for Migration, ‘Europe will need a large number of migrants to support the European economy by 2050’’.
The Regional Governor of Attica also referred to the interventions of the Region of Attica on the refugee/migrant issue. Ms Rena Dourou described the specificities of Attica as a region which is receiving a large number of refugees, therefore, as a token of solidarity, has created a ‘Logistics Centre for the management, storage and supply of relief items for the refugees’, the first one to be set up in Greece, assuring food, shelter and healthcare for these people. In this context, the Regional Governor of Attica stressed the need to recognise the role of local and regional authorities as an integral part of the solution, at European and national level, in cooperation with the governments, the EU institutions, intergovernmental organisations, as well as representatives of civil society. Finally, Ms Rena Dourou emphasized the importance of ‘translating fine words into actions and specific commitments of solidarity’.
Video of the Regional Governor of Attica’s intervention available on: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LN0Ma6393zo&feature=youtu.be
Furthermore, the Regional Governor of Attica, Ms Rena Dourou met with the Mayor of Barcelona, Ms Ada Colau on Monday 2 May 2016, to discuss coordination of actions and initiatives on the issue.
Video of the meeting available on: https://youtu.be/ni4IU4fKMdM