Disentangling the migration and asylum knot : dealing with crisis situations and avoiding detention
Title: Disentangling the migration and asylum knot : dealing with crisis situations and avoiding detention
Author: TRIANDAFYLLIDOU, Anna
Series/Number: EUI RSCAS PP; 2013/19; Global Governance Programme; Cultural Pluralism
While the control of irregular migration and the return of undocumented migrants to their countries of origin has been a priority in the European migration policy since the late 2000s, it has now achieved a new sense of urgency. The EU is faced with a double challenge: to limit irregular migration while keeping its borders open to people in need of international protection, in line with its traditions as well as with its own international conventions and declarations. Offering asylum to those who are persecuted or are unable to return to their countries of origin includes a set of inter-related challenges. It requires providing access to asylum (notably the information and ability to file a claim), safeguarding the fundamental rights of asylum seekers while their cases are being processed, while also ensuring that the asylum “burden” is shared among member states and that borders remain tightly controlled as regards overall irregular migration flows. This policy paper takes a closer look at these challenges and offers recommendations on how to act upon them. The paper starts with an overview of numbers (of immigration flows, stocks, asylum seeking flows and estimates of irregular migration) so as to put the overall issue into perspective (How large are the irregular migration or asylum seeker flows? How large is the overall migrant population in the EU? What are the trends?). Second, it discusses the main features of the EU policy on irregular migration and asylum and highlights the key problematic issues, notably the fuzzy line that separates irregular migrants from asylum seekers; and the systematic use of detention for disciplinary rather than administrative purposes. It proposes new strategies for dealing with these two challenges that do not require legislative changes but rather a change in the practice and an implementation of both national and EU legislation and an increase in cooperation among member states.
Subject: Irregular migration; Asylum; Detention; Border control; EU policy
Type of Access: openAccess