Migrations, Europe must do more


A new European and Italian agenda on migration policy is urgently needed
Of the 65.6 million refugees and displaced persons in the world, Europe welcomes only 3.5 million and refugees, 0.68% of the European population.
An open letter sent to the Italian Government, Parliament and MEPs to ask for a change of course in the European and Italian management of the migration crisis.
On the eve of the EU Council of 22 and 23 June, the networks of Italian civil society organizations – at work every day alongside the tens of thousands of migrants who have arrived in our country – launch a joint appeal to the Italian and European institutions indicating in a road map, the indispensable and urgent measures for a change of course in the management of migratory flows in Italy and a new and more effective European Agenda.

“Two years have passed since the adoption of the European Agenda on Migration – write the signatory organizations – that is to say the set of measures for the management of migration both inside and outside the borders of the ‘EU. Well, in this time we have witnessed the implementation of the main cooperation measures with the countries of origin and transit through the Migration Partnership Framework, the opening of the “hot spots” in Greece and Italy and the adoption of the relocation mechanism ). But we cannot say that the condition of migrants arriving in Europe has improved, nor that of European countries that are in the front line such as Italy and Greece”.

There are several points of perplexity in the policies adopted to deal with a crisis in which there is the highest number of displaced persons and refugees since the Second World War, with 65.6 million people forced to leave their homes due to conflicts, natural disasters , persecution or human rights violations. Just look at the European commitment to reception, which appears completely insufficient: at the end of 2016, according to UNHCR data, there were 3.5 million asylum seekers and refugees in Europe, or 0.68% of the European population. A refugee hosting effort in which EU countries have only taken in around 5% of the world’s refugees.

The security approach of the European and Italian Agenda

“The Agenda proved to be supported by security logics, tending to exclude migrants from European territory, delegating their management to third countries already overloaded with responsibilities”, continue the signatory organizations in the letter sent yesterday. Above all, the consequences of the agreement between the EU and Turkey are of greatest concern more than a year after its adoption. A measure that without really stopping the flows towards Greece, had the direct effect of trapping tens of thousands of people forced to survive in inhumane conditions in the Hellenic country, forcing many others to take increasingly dangerous routes – for example through Bulgaria – and thus exposing them to inhuman and degrading treatment. The same fate would befall migrants in African countries of transit and origin,

“The closure of the central Mediterranean route will not serve to block the flows, but only to make them take other routes, more dangerous and infested with human traffickers. significantly increasing the number of deaths at sea – add the signatories of the appeal – It is essential to regularize the flows by offering resettlement measures, humanitarian channels, family reunification, and willingness to enter the labor market, with a truly shared”.

A framework to which is added the illegitimate application of the hot spot system in Italy – as it is not supported by any law – moreover in the face of non-compliance with the commitments on the relocation of migrants at European level: out of 160,000 asylum seekers from relocated from Greece and Italy to other member states, only 21,313 had been relocated as of 15 June 2017.

The risk represented by the new CIEs in Italy: it is essential to go beyond the emergency

Finally, we come to the consequences of the measures introduced by the so-called Minniti-Orlando decrees, which present serious risks of going backwards with respect to the protection of migrants’ rights.

Among the points that arouse the greatest opposition from the organizations signatory to the appeal, the role of the Permanent Centers for Repatriation (CPR), a new name for the current CIEs, which will be created in each region without, as of today, having any certainties on the methods with which full respect for the rights of the detained persons will be guaranteed. Already because together the abolition of the second degree of judgment for the recognition of the right of asylum and the limitation of the adversarial procedure in the only remaining degree are envisaged; in addition to the provision of a single expulsion procedure, which will be valid both for those who have committed crimes and come from periods of detention, and for the foreign worker without a residence permit, perhaps because he is forced to work illegally or to short term.

Just look at the data. In Italy in 2016 we had about 180,000 arrivals by sea and about 174,000 people were included in the reception system, equal to 0.2% of the Italian population. At the same time, there were 15,939 unaccompanied foreign minors surveyed in April of this year, while those who simply disappeared from the reception system in 2016 were 27,995 (+27.94% compared to 2015).

Requests for a change of course

To correct the current approach defined by the European Agenda for Migration and the measures taken by the Italian Government, the signatory organizations therefore request that:

1. The so-called compacts, defined with third countries, are aimed at promoting sustainable human development policies in the countries of origin and transit of migratory flows and not at mere border control;
2. The EU and its Member States carry out search and rescue (SAR) operations with the sole aim of saving lives
3. The EU and its Member States ensure that people on their borders have access to a fair and effective right to seek asylum
4. Applicants for international protection in Europe have the right to a fair and effective procedure
5. Anyone applying for international protection in Europe, including all those awaiting pronouncement or already rejected and awaiting repatriation, has the right to a dignified reception and access to adequate services 6. Member states pay particular attention to specific
needs of women, children and vulnerable people, regardless of nationality or the granting of the right to asylum
7. Migrants are not considered as detained in reception centers for the sole purpose of being identified
8. Member States contribute their share to the response on forced displacement
9. Member States develop safe and regular channels for refugees and migrants
10. Resettlement, humanitarian visas and other responsibility sharing schemes between EU Member States are managed in a transparent manner. Giving priority to the most vulnerable people and not discriminating on the basis of nationality, religion, gender or ethnicity
11. The EU and its member states only return people to their countries of origin through rights-based procedures human rights, and never under conditions that could endanger them
12. Family reunification schemes and procedures for refugees and asylum seekers are easy to implement and ensure that families are able to reunite as quickly as possible

Kindergarten Table*
Concord Italia
Link 2007
Solidarity brands

Letter to the Prime Minister

Migration Agenda