As written in the official document: "First, the Court concluded that there had been an infringement, by the three Member States concerned, of a decision adopted by the Council with a view to the relocation, on a mandatory basis, from Greece and Italy of 120 000 applicants for global protection to the other Member States of the European Union".
"The ruling is important".
The governments had argued that EU countries alone are responsible for ensuring public safety and not the European Commission, which drew up the quota plan and began legal proceedings against the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland in December 2017. Most of the more than a million migrants who sought refuge in Europe in 2015 were Syrians fleeing civil war. It is referring to the past but it will give us guidance for the future.
After frantic diplomacy by European Union heavyweights France and Germany as well as former European Union member Britain, Turkey last month ordered land borders closed to refugees once more, according to an interior ministry circular cited by the Dogan news agency.
The three countries had citied national security reasons in refusing to take people in.
"By refusing to comply with the temporary mechanism for the relocation of applicants for global protection, Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic have failed to fulfil their obligations under European Union law", said the court ruling.
"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", it stressed.
It also finds Poland and the Czech Republic guilty of failing to fulfil their obligations under an earlier Council decision with regard to 40,000 migrants. The Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland took in nearly none over the two years the scheme was in operation. That argument, the judges said, could only be applied in relation to a specific applicant, not to a whole group. "Hungary, for its part, was not bound by the relocation measures provided for under the latter decision".
However, with the reform of the migration and asylum policy stuck at the Council - due to the blockage by a number of member states - von der Leyen announced that she would come with with a new strategy after being elected to lead the European Union executive.
Responding to Thursday's verdict, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said "this ruling is important".