The new EU Migration and Asylum Pact: what needs to change in order to avoid past mistakes and provide a fresh start

The European Commission’s new Pact on Migration and Asylum is a start to a period of crucial negotiations between EU Member States and the European Parliament to reform the EU’s migration and asylum policies. While the Pact’s commitment to a more human approach to migration and asylum is welcome, it includes many elements that need to be challenged in order to avoid past mistakes.

Saferworld joins with 70 international organisations to call on all EU Member States to break with the mistakes of the previous approach to migration, and to instead negotiate a fresh start through the new Migration and Asylum Pact. Continuing with past policies of externalising border control and responsibility for asylum to third countries risks perpetuating human rights abuses, emboldening repressive governments and creating greater instability. Rather than focusing on deterring migration through externalisation, containment and return policies, EU Member States and the European Parliament have the opportunity to ensure that the Pact instead prioritises civilian protection, rights, peace and sustainable development.

We ask all EU Member States and the European Parliament to step up to this challenge during these important negotiations and to reflect upon what needs to change.

Read the joint statement.