European Union nations agreed to speed up the deportation of failed Asylum seekers as they took a harder line towards tackling the blocs worst migration crisis since World War II. Interior ministers endorsed a dedicated programme to send back those they described as economic migrants- who are largely from poor African nations- and not refugees from conflict zones. “Those who do not require international protection must return to their countries of origin,” Luxembourg minister Jean Asselborn, whose country holds the EU presidency, told reporters after talks. Europe has been seeking to clamp down on people smugglers in the Mediterranean, where more than 3,000 people have already died this year, or are missing or feared drowned, while trying to make their way to Europe. European warships launched Operation Sophia this week, to seize traffickers boats in international waters, and the UN Security Council is set to vote on Friday on a draft resolution to authorise military action against smugglers. While the vote is not necessary for the EU to take action, the measure would authorise it’s navy to board ships for inspection, confiscate them and even dispose of vessels suspected of being used by migrant smugglers.