Lithuanian Interior Minister Agnė Bilotaitė has turned to her Slovenian counterpart Aleš Hojs, whose country is now holding the rotating EU Council presidency, and asked him to hold an extraordinary meeting of the EU's Justice and Home Affairs Council (JHA).
“Only two weeks have passed since the last meeting of EU interior ministers, and the number of illegal migrants has almost doubled over that time. This situation needs urgent action and decisions,” Bilotaitė was quoted in a statement released by Lithuania's Interior Ministry.
In her letter, Bilotaitė also said that Lithuania needed tangible political, financial and expert assistance to stop irregular migrants from travelling to Lithuania and further to other EU member states.
“Installation of a physical barrier is one of the key tasks. Taking the dynamics of migrations flows, we believe it is the only pragmatic solution that will help us achieve results in the short term,” the interior minister said.
Lithuania has seen an unprecedented hike of irregular migration over the past months. Over 3,000 migrants were stopped after crossing from Belarus. Vilnius officials say the Belarusian government is facilitating migrant smuggling in retaliation for EU sanctions.