We can't be harsh enough in our criticism of the European Council's total lack of necessary action when it comes to the refugee disasters in the Mediterranean. The fact that thousands of people have died and thousands more will die, so close or even on European waters, if not appropriate measures are taken, is a common European problem and must be dealt with accordingly, with joint forces, in the short and the long term.
At its special meeting on 23 April 2015, the European Council failed to find any sustainable measures to prevent further humanitarian disasters in the Mediterranean. The council's comprise to triple the budget in a operation that is heavily under-funded, hardly creates a ripple in the Mediterranean and won't prevent more tragic and unnecessary deaths.
The short term solution requires a European funded and controlled operation. This would be an operation in which member states combine their resources from their Navy forces, coastguards and search and rescue units to save lives and to stop human traffickers.
It's also miserable that the council failed to support any suggestions of legal ways for refugees to travel to Europe with a humanitarian visa. Such a solution would most likely end the monopoly of human traffickers.
In the long term, Europe must learn its lesson and realize that common problems and challenges are best met together. It requires common resources and joint administration in these key areas. If short term political interests and national battering prevents long term solutions from the council, then we can't wait for systematic reforms on the council's competences. It's not only a matter of democracy and accountability, it's also a matter of the common good and pragmatism.
The world are watching us and they will judge us on how we handle this humanitarian crisis on our own border.