18 Mar 2024


Law at the Border

Professor Ulrich Becker (Director) and Dr Constantin Hruschka (Senior Research Fellow) have published a ‘view point’ in the English edition of the MaxPlanckResearch magazine 4/2023. Entitled ‘Law at the Border‘, Becker and Hruschka provide an analysis of the agreement—reached shortly before Christmas 2023—on reform of EU asylum procedures at the bloc’s external borders.

The authors note that while the intention behind the reform is to streamline and secure border processes, there is a stark division in opinion regarding its implications, with some viewing it as a necessary step to curb irregular migration and others fearing it could lead to a decline in asylum standards and potential human rights violations.

The authors delve into the historical context underpinning the need for structured border procedures and argue that they should be developed in a way that makes the procedures expeditious as well as, of course, lawful. Creating fair and efficient procedures poses a practical challenge.

While border procedures can be regulated in a lawful manner and can contribute to a more effective distinction between those in need of protection and other potential arrivals, the authors warn that they are not a panacea. Such procedures:

do not reduce the number of refugees, nor do they contribute to a meaningful overall responsibility-sharing approach. Multilateral agreements with third countries will remain indispensable and, above all, addressing the root causes of forced displacement and migration is crucial. None of this is new. But it is important, and the time has come once again to bring it to mind.

Read the complete text here.

Illustration: Sophie Ketterer for the Max Planck Society

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