MPI Europe Webinar
Addressing Crisis at Europe's Borders: Are Policymakers Moving in the Right Direction?
Elizabeth Collett, Director, MPI Europe
Madeline Garlick, IMI/OSF Fellow, MPI Europe (former head of policy at UNHCR Brussels)
Michelle Mittelstadt, Director of Communications and Public Affairs, MPI
During a dramatic and contentious European Summit, heads of state on 25-26 June set themselves the voluntary target of relocating 40,000 Syrian and Eritrean asylum seekers from Italy and Greece across the European Union. Most media attention has focussed on whether that target can be met, and by which Member States; far less attention has been given to how the system will actually function in practice. But relocation was just one element of the Council’s conclusions, which also discussed the need for greater third-country cooperation and placed asylum concerns firmly within a broader migration management frame. This Migration Policy Institute Europe teleconference will be an opportunity to discuss the politics and mechanics of asylum seeker relocation—whether voluntary, mandatory, temporary, or permanent—and whether this is signifies a new phase of intra-EU cooperation on asylum. Panelists also review both the meaning and implications of various initiatives and commitments contained in the Council conclusions, and ask the question: Is Europe moving in the right direction, and what more will be needed?
This teleconference marks the first in a series of briefings, with a broad range of experts, as part of ongoing work by MPI Europe and the International Migration Initiative of the Open Society Foundations on the future of asylum policy in the European Union, and the role Europe plays within the global protection system. As the need for solutions becomes ever more urgent and ever more politically sensitive, MPI Europe is investing in a programme of research, analysis, convening, and debate to identify new areas of cooperation for European actors, as well as recalibrate the current tensions concerning multiple and competing policy priorities—from protection of growing displaced populations through to the need to ensure cohesive and thriving European societies.