"Number of Med migrants could fall"

The Belgian Asylum and Migration Secretary Theo Francken has welcomed proposals from the European Commission for EU countries to accept a quota of Med migrants. Mr Francken suggested that the quota for Belgium could be quite favourable.

Under EC plans migrants arriving in the EU after crossing the Mediterranean in rickety boats by sea would be dispatched to destinations across the continent.

Theo Francken told lawmakers that Europe should not shut its eyes to the greatest refugee crisis since the Second World War.

Mr Francken stressed that some countries - notably in Eastern Europe - will have to make a greater effort, but because Belgium has been taking in more people than the European average the number of Med migrants heading for Belgium could fall.

Belgium is upping the number of war zone refugees being settled here of its own accord from 150 to 550. The Asylum Secretary also noted that the EU is tackling people traffickers behind the exodus and is considering return policies.