The EU Wednesday asked its member states to admit 40,000 asylum-seekers from Syria and Eritrea landing in Italy and Greece, which have been overstretched by an influx of migrants.

The emergency proposal, which comes atop another one to resettle in member states some 20,000 refugees who are outside Europe, is in response to a surge in migrants making the dangerous crossing over the Mediterranean.

Both Rome and Athens, which are struggling with the wave of migrants, appealed to the 26 other EU states to share the burden.

“We … have a proposal for an emergency mechanism to relocate 40,000 asylum-seekers to other European [member] states,” EU migration commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos told a news conference.

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