30 years later: where does the European Union stand? It is the end of a year that will be remembered for the new coronavirus and all the hardship it created. And again, the most vulnerable have borne the brunt of this hardship, among them, notably, migrants – in Europe, as well as elsewhere.
Three months ago, the European Commission has presented its proposal for a new
asylum and refugee policy, the so called New Pact on Migration and Asylum
. That is why the Progressive Post takes the opportunity of International Migrant’s Day, to analyse the potential of this ‘New Pact
The former German SPD-presidential candidate and President of Viadrina European University, Gesine Schwan, argues that it does not address “the crucial points for an effective solution that corresponds to the challenges on the ground, international law and, above all, human rights”, and suggests putting the focus rather on the entities that deal with the issue on the round: municipalities.
Giacomo Orsini, from the Université Catholique de Louvain questions the factual grounding of the EU’s migration policy. Two pillars of this policy have actually been disproven for a long time: promoting economic development in countries of origin as a tool to curb migration does not work. And “deportations are simply too complex and contentious to be successfully speeded up”. They, therefore, need reconsideration in the light of academic evidence.
Rather than following the EU’s values of human rights, the EC proposals “call for even more detention, more camps at the external borders […] that limit the fundamental rights of asylum applicants”, laments the MEP Birgit Sippel. And she asks: “if we give up humanity and fundamental rights when dealing with people seeking protection, what are our values […] worth at all?”