Anti-smuggling policies in Europe : inconsistencies and human rights impacts

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Bellomo, Irene
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The fight against migrant smuggling has been a top priority on the agenda of the EU and its Member States since 1999, but the need to stop ‘uncontrolled flows’ of migrants and refugees has become more evident with the 2015 ‘migration crisis’. Starting from a theoretical conceptualization of migrant smuggling and by taking the international framework as a reference, this work reconstructs the evolution of legislation and policies adopted by the EU to tackle irregular migration and disrupt smuggling networks to highlight the main inconsistencies of a mainly security-based approach. In particular, the missed creation of new legal pathways to reach Europe safely will be highlighted to claim that the approach has been incoherent. The cooperation with Libyan authorities and specifically with the Libyan Coast Guards will be reviewed to assess whether it meets current human rights standards for the protection of migrants and refugees. The commitment of civil society to demand more accountability for externalisation policies and anti-smuggling operations will be given prominence to demonstrate that human rights obligations need to be given full realisation in migration management.
Second semester University: National University of Ireland, Galway
smuggling, migrations, European Union, irregular migrations, refugees, Lybia, human rights