1st April 2014: This morning at the European Parliament in Brussels, Andrew Brons made the following contribution during a debate in the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) on the deaths in the Mediterranean of illegal migrants trying to reach Europe.
"The Task Force Mediterranean was set up to, 'take determined action to prevent deaths at sea'.
"Before something can be prevented, it is necessary to know why it happens.
"The deaths in the Mediterranean happen because people are prepared to risk themselves and others in inappropriate boats to reach Europe.
"Why do they take that risk? It is because, if they land in Europe or are rescued at sea and then taken to Europe, they might be granted asylum - not necessarily because they are personally in danger but because they come from a dangerous country and there are plenty of those in the world.
"If they are refused asylum and given a returns decision, they will have only about a 36% chance of being returned - 178,000 out of total of 474,000 in 2012.
"You will remember hearing that in the debate on Returns Policy yesterday, or no you will not remember, because I was the only member of the Committee in the audience. I became quite lonely at one point.
"So who is responsible for their deaths? The people who frame the asylum laws and allow people to stay. Secondly, those responsible for Returns Policy who fail to return most of them.
"Those who hold out the prize of asylum, attract people to take their chance.
"How can we prevent further deaths?
"We can announce loudly and clearly that no people who land in the EU or attempt to land in the EU without authorisation, are even considered for asylum. When that is understood, there will be no more deaths in the Mediterranean.
"Continue with the present and there will be more and more deaths- The choice is ours.
"We have been told this morning (by Mr Muschel, Director for Migration and Asylum) that we can cut down on illegal migration by increasing legal migration.
"You can reduce breaches of any law by allowing potential law breakers to do legally what they were going to do illegally!