April 2 (UPI) -- The European Union's Court of Justice ruled Thursday that the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland violated rules by not accepting a refugee quota set in 2015 for those fleeing violence in Syria and Iraq.
All three nations had voted against helping Italy and Greece relocate the refugees, which was approved by more than two-thirds of EU members. The court said the three governments failed to take on their share of the 120,000 refugees in the program.
"By refusing to comply with the temporary mechanism for the relocation of applicants for international protection, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic have failed to fulfill their obligations under European Union law," the court said.
"Those member states can rely neither on their responsibilities concerning the maintenance of law and order and the safeguarding of internal security nor on the alleged malfunctioning of the relocation mechanism to avoid implementing that mechanism."
Hungary Justice Minister Varga Judit said the quotas were "unreasonable from the beginning."
"It was never fully implemented by almost any country," Judit said. "We will continue to fight against the European mainstream, who still did not understand that supporting migration is not a good response to the problems of Europe."
The court said the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland must start meeting refugee quotas or face financial penalties.