International Law Bulletin / 09_2018


The European Union on the migration issue


The unprecedented level of global displacement of populations requires targeted, dynamic actions with a strong spirit of solidarity among European States. Migration will play a key role in the future of Europe and the very substance of the European Union with a strong influence on geo-economics, geo-politics and subsets of domestic national security. As the starting point of modern migratory flows, the Syrian civil war expelled the populations concerned from a direct departure from their country towards Europe, while migratory waves from Africa, both Libya and Afghanistan, moved in the same direction without the existence of adequate and adequate hosting, hosting and absorption infrastructures by European states unable to cope with the waves of unchecked frequent entry into their borders by third-country nationals. It goes without saying that on the basis of the current International Conventions, those who meet the requirements for refugee status can be hosted on European soil. However, as there is a divergence of views on fundamental issues, any differentiation on the part of the EU Member States with regard to the uniform treatment of refugees entails unequal burdens which will lead to a gradual deterioration of relations between States but also further between the institutions of the EU institutions.

The formulation of a number of reservations and proposals that are slower than current and extremely urgent developments with a mainly repressive nature does not give rise to a particularly optimistic prospect, especially given their difficult implementation due to controversy, controversy and internal political developments. On the contrary, the lack of a single political will, which would lead to the conscious and universal application of a uniform legislative framework with a uniform implementation and evenly distributed obligations, is evidently highlighted.  In particular, the recent agreement between Germany, Spain and Greece provides for the return of asylum seekers enrolled in the Eurodac[1] system in Greece and Spain and is recognized at the German border, as well as the processing of pending cases of family reunification. As a rule, the repatriating country also finances this refoulement. The essence of the political agreement with Greece and Spain is precisely that, on the one hand, the consent of Greece and Spain to take back asylum seekers who have been registered in their country at Eurodac and who are recognized here at the border points control at the German-Austrian border. And, on the other hand, Germany's consent to gradually process the cases of family reunification pending in these two countries allowing relatives living in Greece and Spain to come to Germany.

The positive elements of the Agreement lie in the prospect of co-operation, which in fact introduces European states to a sense of solidarity and to a common European policy, and not to a unilateral policy that will intensify elements of isolation and consequently border closure. As Immanuel Kant had said, "societies are inevitably next to each other. A violent challenge against law and justice in a particular place has consequences in many other places and can be experienced everywhere as we do not live in isolated national communities." Effective management of refugee and migratory flows, however, requires a single European asylum and immigration policy based on the principle of solidarity (Article 80 TFEU) as a basic justifiable principle for a fair and proportional sharing of responsibilities in the EU. At European level, (1) Revision of the provisions for the examination of asylum applications from the country of first entry (Dublin Regulation), 2) Establishment of a compulsory redistribution mechanism within the EU for both recognized refugees and asylum seekers in a fair and proportionate way; 3) Establishment of a mechanism for compulsory redistribution and relocation of undocumented migrants based on a fair proportionality in all Member States; 4) Adoption of European Asylum for foreigners who seek asylum EU in total and allocated proportionally to the Member States, 5) Providing development assistance to the countries of origin provided that they have to accept their citizens who are not admitted to the EU, 6) Creating hot spots in the first-mover states, such as Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey, 7) Developing legitimate alternative routes for seeking protection in Europe.  In this context, the principle of solidarity and a fair burden-sharing of the European Union is of fundamental importance for the coherence and sustainability of the EU and its reconnection with the humanitarian tradition of European Enlightenment.


[1] European system for parsing fingerprints of asylum seekers either on Eurodac I upon their entry into the EU or as asylum seekers in Eurodac II


Written by: Augusta – Maria Kaloudi

Legal Associate of the Foundation of International Legal Studies

of Professor Elias Krispis

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