A humane EU Migration Pact
We continue to tragically lose lives in the Mediterranean sea and on EU shores. People are suffering while seeking safety and protection in EU countries. People fleeing from wars and political persecution still face detention and violent push-backs from national authorities. They are still exposed to the violence at the hands of smugglers, to exploitation. They are still facing social exclusion, racism and hate crimes. On top of this, climate change, environmental disasters and extreme poverty are putting extra risks to their lives, trying to reach Europe.
The EU has failed to provide safe channels for humane migration. Rather than managing migration, refugees are being instrumentalised by the far right as scapegoats for societal issues. We need an EU migration and asylum pact that treats people seeking safety with dignity. Let’s fight for a humane migration policy that enables safe passage, upholds human rights law and facilitates successful integration. Let’s create a welcoming Europe!
The EU Pact on Migration and Asylum: What the Greens/EFA stand for
At the moment, the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union are negotiating a new Pact on Migration and Asylum. During these negotiations the Greens/EFA in the European Parliament continue to stand for the principles of solidarity, access to asylum, fair relocation between Member States, and respect for fundamental rights.
This is why we are calling for in detail:
- Respect and protection of international law and fundamental rights
- Access to fair and efficient asylum procedures
- Ensure dignified reception conditions and solidarity among Member States
- a fair share of responsibility for asylum applications among all Member States
- Safe and legal channels for migration, including family reunification
- an EU approach to labour migration that promotes mobility to and within the EU
- Saving lives at sea and the establishment of EU-coordinated and EU-funded search and rescue, in respect of international human rights and maritime law.
An EU migration policy based on human rights - not blame games
The Greens/EFA believe that a migration policy founded on human rights and solidarity is urgently needed. The right to asylum shall be upheld and the human rights of all migrants shall be respected, as provided by international and human rights laws, including the Geneva Convention, to which the EU is party. We want to establish a humane asylum system with fast and decentralised procedures.
However, the current proposals being negotiated are unfortunately fake solutions based on short-sighted political ambitions. Conservatives promote a tough approach, eg. by increasing the use of systemic detention. They do not suggest any workable solution or fair procedures, which would enhance compliance. Fair procedures would also reduce the risks of marginalisation and social exclusion.
But instead of seeking humane and practical solutions to manage migration in an orderly and safe way, EU Member States have been pursuing dangerous policies that are turning the Mediterranean into a graveyard.
For a humane migration pact, we will not accept:
- The use of systematic and prolonged detention of migrants, including children and families at the external borders of the EU
- Lowering of procedural standards and safeguards as part of the asylum procedure, including for example by reducing the right of appeal or justifying summary deportations in the absence of appropriate judicial review
- Externalisation of migration management to third countries (i.e. Libya, Turkey, Tunisia...) in the absence of fundamental rights monitoring, democratic scrutiny and parliamentary oversight (see for example the recent EU-Tunisia deal)
The detention of migrants, children and families at the borders is totally unacceptable. The EU cannot allow the systematic and prolonged detention of people in unsanitary and unsafe conditions to continue. The Greens/EFA Group will never accept the lowering of procedural standards and legal safeguards in asylum procedures. Asylum seekers must retain the right to appeal or justification of deportation in the case of a failed application.
It’s time to end the inhumane and degrading treatment of refugees and migrants at EU borders.
A Europe of solidarity, a welcoming Europe
Funding autocrats and militias to handle migration management without any democratic scrutiny or fundamental rights is a recipe for abuses and attacks against people's liberties. The EU cannot continue to outsource our issues without ensuring the utmost respect for human rights, the rule of law and European values.
The mistreatment of migrants is a Europe-wide issue that requires practical and fair solutions based on solidarity and respect for human rights. We must not leave border countries to deal with the brunt of this crisis without solidarity from the rest of Europe.
This issue can not be solved by NGOs and individuals alone. And those helping migrants at sea must not face persecution by any government. Their vital work must not be persecuted. To stop the shipwrecks and lost lives at sea we urgently need an EU-coordinated, state-led search and rescue mission in the Mediterranean.
This is why the Greens/EFA are calling for a humane EU migration pact, so people seeking help can do so in dignity and under human rights law - for a Europe free from fear, for a Europe of solidarity!