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Restrictions in EU Immigration and Asylum Policies in the light of International Human Rights Standards

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Abstract:

If freedom of movement for European Union nationals means the lifting of internal borders,elimination of controls and facilitation of travelling, the freedom of movement for non-EUnationals is associated with notions such as more immigration controls, more identity checks andfewer arrivals at EU external borders. In recent years immigration and asylum policies in the EUhave become expansive and constructive of the idea of a ‘fortress Europe’. The territorialexpansion of the EU has been inextricably linked with the need for repressive measures toprotect the external borders of the Union from unwanted threats of migration as well as securityconsiderations.The paper analyzes the legality of restrictions in light of the principles of protection ofhuman rights in Europe. In particular, it examines the extent and scope of the protection regimerendered to migrants by the European Convention on Human Rights. The article argues thatdespite the international human rights commitments, the EU Member States, all parties to theEuropean Convention, still fail to ensure the full realisation of immigrants and asylum seekers’human rights. The case study of immigration and asylum policies in the EU vis-à-vis third countrynationals from the Newly Independent States is aimed at demonstrating the discrepanciesbetween such restrictions and international human rights standards.

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