On 8th April the Commission issued a press statement entitled “The European Commission’s response to the migratory flows from North Africa.” The statement attempts to clarify how the EU has responded to the situation, and what the EU may possibly do to provide assistance to the states mostly affected by it...not merely the southern EU MS but also, and importantly, the North African countries themselves. The statement’s timing seems to hint at a possible need felt by the Commission to respond to some of the accusations launched against it regarding perceived delays in providing support and an apparent reluctance to provide increased assistance to the southern EU MS.
In relation to EASO, the statement provides that it could be relevant in a case of massive influx of migrants and asylum-seekers:
“...Concrete assistance could likewise be provided by the newly-created European Asylum Support Office, one of whose central tasks is coordination of assistance to Member States whose asylum systems are under exceptional pressure. This could involve the deployment of so-called 'asylum support teams' to reinforce the capacities of a State to process asylum claims and to ensure appropriate reception conditions for asylum seekers...”