Migration policies and human rights in the European Union: the state of the art in a context of “policrise” | 2017

Author(s) Maria Teresa Pinto Tomás Alves
Advisor(s) Alessandra Silveira
Year 2017

Synopsis This Master thesis aims to map the measures adopted by the European Union to respond to the pressing needs of the migratory crisis, and to realize the implications they have for human rights. To this end, we firstly attempt to contextualize the Migration Crisis accurately. We present the main routes used by migratory influxes to reach European territory and then we draw the conceptual distinction between migrants and refugees for a better understanding of the object of our study. Having said this, we identify the main nationalities of the influxes under analysis, the Member States most wanted by them, and their effective dimension in the European Union, which is experiencing a “policrise” conjuncture. Next, we present the measures adopted, in a non-chronological analysis, inserting them in the lines enunciated by the European Council, as defining the Union’s action in the field of migration policy. We then turn our attention to the implications that certain measures, due to their adoption, or while their application, bring to the international human rights law, which is enshrined by the European Union law, as fundamental rights. This also allows us to understand the acting of the Member States of the Union, in the context of the implementation of the measures adopted by the Union, to which they are linked, and, in the context of the European law and human rights (existing before crisis), which provides a framework of minimum guarantees related to reception and protection of applicants for international protection – to which Member States are linked too. We give emphasis on Hungary given its uncompromising performance that ignores its own historical past. Posteriori, we refer to the “Portuguese Case”, which diverges from the outline mapped in the other Member States of the European Union, and then we conclude the dissertation with a brief, open and plural approach to the question “what has failed?”. To do so, we have recourse to different authors who justify perspectives that we consider relevant to consider, insofar as they allow a privileged space of reflection and, consequently, put us closer to what may be the effective origin of most of the reported failures, during that conjuncture and that have helped to create it, simultaneously.

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