On 16th December 2019, at the extraordinary sitting of the Executive Board of the Maltese-Serbian Community (MSC), regarding the situation surrounding children of third-country nationals, and specifically the families of 22 Serbian children who face deportation and separation from their families, the MSC urgently calls on the respective Maltese authorities to implement the EU Directive 2003/86/EC (Guidance for application of Directive 2003/86/EC on the right to family reunification) and address the issue as soon as possible.
The MSC fully supports the citizen initiative spearheaded by the parents of the 22 children to contest the bureaucratic rigidity and discriminatory practices with dire consequences for their children and the unity of their families.
Moreover, MSC underlines the importance of safeguarding the best interests of children, enshrined in international treaties and charters ratified by Malta and Serbia.
The MSC extends its gratitude to the Maltese authorities that are actively looking into addressing the issue, as well the Embassy of Serbia in Rome and Ambassador, His Excellency Goran Aleksić for their continuous support of the MSC.
The MSC would also like to thank various institutions, civil society groups, NGOs and professional organizations who voiced their outright support for changing these administrative requirements, namely:
His Excellency The Archbishop of Malta, Mgr. Charles Scicluna
His Excellency Bishop Andrej Ćilerdžić of Remesiana,
The Reverend Father Risto Gorančić, of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Malta
Maltese Cultural Ambassador , Opera Singer Mr. Joseph Calleja
Malta Chamber of Psychologists
Malta Foundation for Wellbeing of Society
President Emeritus Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca
The Malta Paediatric Association
Maltese Association of Psychiatry