Is the European Union responsible for taking care of migrants in Turkey and Libya?

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For more than four years, attorney Annick Pijnenburg has conducted scholarly research on the liability and immigration deals of rich Western countries. The European Union, the United States, and Australia limit the flow of migrants and refugees through such deals, but do they bear no responsibility whatsoever for the well-being of those who do not allow them this way?

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“States have an obligation to effectively guarantee human rights,” says Annick Bainenberg. “At first glance, the rights of future migrants and refugees in countries like Turkey and Libya may not seem like the responsibility of the European Union.” But Pijnenburg’s legal research now shows that the well-being of these people is also important, for example the European Union when it strikes an immigration deal.

Change the problem

“You cannot say, ‘Because people have not crossed our borders, they are not under our responsibility,’” Bignenburg says. “In this way you simply cannot change the problem. Human rights treaties state that the European Union is partly responsible for those who were unable to reach Europe due to migration deals with the European Union. And because living conditions in Turkey and Libya are often not good for migrants. … the European Union can bear joint responsibility for this. “

Will migrants in these regions soon be able to turn to the European Union for support? What are the consequences of similar deals in the United States and Australia? Annick Pijnenburg speaks extensively on her research in the VPRO program Bureau Buitenland.

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