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EU External Migration Policy and the Protection of Human Rights

28-09-2020

This in-depth analysis focuses on the human rights implications of EU external migration policy interventions: (1) identifying human rights obligations owed to third-country nationals when engaging in cooperation with third countries and non-EU actors; (2) assessing the means and level of compliance with these obligations when designing and implementing the main policy instruments; and (3) determining the existence and adequacy of operational, reporting, monitoring and accountability mechanisms available ...

This in-depth analysis focuses on the human rights implications of EU external migration policy interventions: (1) identifying human rights obligations owed to third-country nationals when engaging in cooperation with third countries and non-EU actors; (2) assessing the means and level of compliance with these obligations when designing and implementing the main policy instruments; and (3) determining the existence and adequacy of operational, reporting, monitoring and accountability mechanisms available in each case to track and respond to potential violations. Particular attention is paid to soft-law tools, on account of their enhanced potential to erode the enforceability of obligations, to downgrade democratic accountability and generally undermine the rule of law. Paving the way for the New Pact on Migration and Asylum, special emphasis is placed on cooperation under the Global Approach to Migration and Mobility, the EU Agenda on Migration and the Migration Partnership Framework, including informal arrangements concluded by Frontex or by the Member States themselves. Four case studies guide the analysis and illustrate findings: (1) the EU-Turkey Statement; (2) the multi-modal cooperation with Libya; (3) the Joint Way Forward with Afghanistan; and (4) collaboration with Niger under the EUCAP Sahel mission. The in-depth analysis reveals that the full effect of the EU fundamental rights acquis in extra-territorial situations has not been duly accounted for and proposes a system to ensure compliance with the relevant standards covering the pre-conclusion, design, adoption, implementation, evaluation and review phases, highlighting the role of the European Parliament and civil society organisations.

Údar seachtarach

Dr Violeta MORENO-LAX,

Plenary round-up – Strasbourg, March I 2019

15-03-2019

Highlights of the March I plenary session included debates on Brexit, preparation of the European Council meeting of 21-22 March 2019, and the latest debate on the Future of Europe, with Peter Pellegrini, Slovakia's Prime Minister. Parliament also held debates on a proposed European human rights violations sanctions regime; the situation in Venezuela and Nicaragua; opening EU-US trade negotiations; climate change; gender balance in nominations to EU economic and monetary affairs bodies; and on the ...

Highlights of the March I plenary session included debates on Brexit, preparation of the European Council meeting of 21-22 March 2019, and the latest debate on the Future of Europe, with Peter Pellegrini, Slovakia's Prime Minister. Parliament also held debates on a proposed European human rights violations sanctions regime; the situation in Venezuela and Nicaragua; opening EU-US trade negotiations; climate change; gender balance in nominations to EU economic and monetary affairs bodies; and on the urgency to establish an EU blacklist of third countries with weak regimes on anti-money-laundering and countering terrorist financing. Finally, Parliament adopted first-reading positions on three further proposed funding programmes for the 2021-2027 period. A number of Brexit-preparedness measures were also adopted.

The EU, Middle East and North Africa [What Think Tanks are thinking]

06-10-2017

Developments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) pose a growing challenge for the European Union. Many countries in the region face war, political turmoil and popular anger, due to the impact of poverty in generating instability, migration and, in some cases, terrorism. The EU wants to contribute to stability in MENA through instruments such as the European Neighbourhood Policy and the Union for the Mediterranean, but there are calls for the EU to play an even more active role in the region ...

Developments in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) pose a growing challenge for the European Union. Many countries in the region face war, political turmoil and popular anger, due to the impact of poverty in generating instability, migration and, in some cases, terrorism. The EU wants to contribute to stability in MENA through instruments such as the European Neighbourhood Policy and the Union for the Mediterranean, but there are calls for the EU to play an even more active role in the region. This note offers links to recent commentaries and reports by major international think tanks on EU-MENA relations and the general problems found within the region and some specific countries.

Afghanistan: Challenges and Perspectives until 2020

02-02-2017

The international Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan, held in Brussels on 4-5 October 2016, was a success. High representatives of 75 countries and 26 international organisations renewed their commitment to Afghanistan’s stability and development; they also pledged EUR 13.6 billion to support the unity government until 2020. However the country is going through very difficult times: in 2016 insurgents have committed more attacks, which have caused more victims, and controlled more territory than ...

The international Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan, held in Brussels on 4-5 October 2016, was a success. High representatives of 75 countries and 26 international organisations renewed their commitment to Afghanistan’s stability and development; they also pledged EUR 13.6 billion to support the unity government until 2020. However the country is going through very difficult times: in 2016 insurgents have committed more attacks, which have caused more victims, and controlled more territory than in 2015. The numbers of internally displaced people and of refugees returning to Afghanistan, particularly from Pakistan, have grown dramatically. The economic situation is bleak and the government has very limited capacities to provide basic services. The country requires continuous international support for economic development, regional economic cooperation and a reconciliation process leading to lasting peace.

Údar seachtarach

Giulia BONACQUISTI (Trans European Policy Studies Association - TEPSA, Belgium) and Victor TANZARELLA HARTMANN (Trans European Policy Studies Association - TEPSA, Belgium) (for the workshop report) ; Mona KANWAL SHEIKH (Danish Institute for International Studies, Denmark - for the briefing 1) ; Arne STRAND (U4 Anti-Corruption Resource Centre, Chr. Michelsen Institute, Norway - briefing 2) ; Richard GHIASY (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute - SIPRI, Sweden)

The EU security environment: Challenges and shifts

15-06-2016

Over the past few years, the world’s commitment to peace and its capacity to deal with evolving security challenges have been put to the test. The outcomes – an increasing number of refugees, an expanding network of terrorist organisations, some countries’ high dependency on international aid, and a relatively low level of respect for civil liberties around the world – demonstrate an urgent need for reflection and adaptation.

Over the past few years, the world’s commitment to peace and its capacity to deal with evolving security challenges have been put to the test. The outcomes – an increasing number of refugees, an expanding network of terrorist organisations, some countries’ high dependency on international aid, and a relatively low level of respect for civil liberties around the world – demonstrate an urgent need for reflection and adaptation.

Security in Afghanistan: Unfinished business

25-02-2016

Even though the NATO-led military operation against the Taliban ceased in 2014, security in Afghanistan is still elusive. A divided government, weak security forces and poor economic performance make the fight against insurgency, terrorism and criminal networks more complicated. To help Afghanistan further consolidate the progress achieved to date and support its growth, the EU is focused on reinforcing democracy, fostering the rule of law and respect for human rights, and encouraging development ...

Even though the NATO-led military operation against the Taliban ceased in 2014, security in Afghanistan is still elusive. A divided government, weak security forces and poor economic performance make the fight against insurgency, terrorism and criminal networks more complicated. To help Afghanistan further consolidate the progress achieved to date and support its growth, the EU is focused on reinforcing democracy, fostering the rule of law and respect for human rights, and encouraging development. The future of Afghanistan is due to be discussed at the NATO Summit in Warsaw on 7-8 July and the Ministerial Conference on Afghanistan on 4-5 October in Brussels.

Kazakhstan's long-held stability threatened

08-02-2016

Russia's annexation of Crimea and the conflict in eastern Ukraine are worrying Kazakhstan, given its large Russian minority in the regions bordering Russia. Kazakhstan's proximity to Afghanistan exposes the country to threats such as religious extremism, drug trafficking and terrorism, particularly after NATO's withdrawal from Afghanistan. Russia is increasing its influence in regional security matters and pushing Kazakhstan for greater cooperation in the fight against shared threats.

Russia's annexation of Crimea and the conflict in eastern Ukraine are worrying Kazakhstan, given its large Russian minority in the regions bordering Russia. Kazakhstan's proximity to Afghanistan exposes the country to threats such as religious extremism, drug trafficking and terrorism, particularly after NATO's withdrawal from Afghanistan. Russia is increasing its influence in regional security matters and pushing Kazakhstan for greater cooperation in the fight against shared threats.

Pakistan and China: 'Iron Brothers' Forever?

18-06-2015

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the People's Republic of China have enjoyed long-lasting and friendly ties – despite their ideological differences, evident in their very names. The two share far more than a 520 kilometre border, as underscored by the April 2015 visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Pakistan. On that trip – his first trip abroad in 2015 – Xi announced a EUR 41.30-billion commitment to building a multi-faceted network called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The ...

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the People's Republic of China have enjoyed long-lasting and friendly ties – despite their ideological differences, evident in their very names. The two share far more than a 520 kilometre border, as underscored by the April 2015 visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Pakistan. On that trip – his first trip abroad in 2015 – Xi announced a EUR 41.30-billion commitment to building a multi-faceted network called the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). The CPEC can be understood as part of China's 'pivot to Asia' and plays a role in Beijing's broader 'One Belt One Road' initiative. If completed, the CPEC has the potential to fundamentally alter South Asia's economy and geopolitics.

Evaluation of the EU-India Strategic Partnership and the Potential for its Revitalisation

18-06-2015

The EU-India strategic partnership has lost momentum. Bilateral ties are not receiving sufficient priority from both sides. Economics remains at the core of this relationship. Since negotiations on the Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) may take time to be concluded, EU-India ties should not be held hostage to developments at BTIA level. On defence and security matters, India deals with EU Member States directly and has a good framework for cooperation with major European powers. The ...

The EU-India strategic partnership has lost momentum. Bilateral ties are not receiving sufficient priority from both sides. Economics remains at the core of this relationship. Since negotiations on the Broad-based Trade and Investment Agreement (BTIA) may take time to be concluded, EU-India ties should not be held hostage to developments at BTIA level. On defence and security matters, India deals with EU Member States directly and has a good framework for cooperation with major European powers. The recent Indian decision to buy Rafale jets from France will also have long-term implications for EU-India links. Unlike its partnerships with the US and Russia, India has yet to discover the relevance of EU-India relations within evolving Asian security and economic architecture. Growing Indo-American relations and the close transatlantic partnership could provide new opportunities to work together. Collaboration in research and innovation has expanded significantly and dialogues on global governance, energy, counter-terrorism, migration and mobility as well as human rights all show great potential. New dialogues could be initiated on Afghanistan, maritime security, development cooperation and the Middle-East. Indian engagement in resolving the Ukraine crisis could be explored.

Údar seachtarach

Gulshan SACHDEVA (Centre for European Studies, School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India)

Afghanistan: human rights situation

18-02-2015

The human rights gains made over the past 12 years in Afghanistan are increasingly under threat with a resurgence of violence, and women’s rights in particular being degraded. The EU is deeply concerned by the country's deteriorating situation.

The human rights gains made over the past 12 years in Afghanistan are increasingly under threat with a resurgence of violence, and women’s rights in particular being degraded. The EU is deeply concerned by the country's deteriorating situation.

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