At the asylum summit, the long-standing dispute over an EU asylum system seems to have ended. What does the agreement mean? All information about the decided procedure.
Luxembourg – The asylum summit of EU interior ministers paves the way for a uniform asylum procedure at the EU’s external borders for the first time. A reform of the common European asylum system (CEAS) has been the subject of struggle in Europe for years. Thanks to the unification, Europe can finally ensure reliable control and order of migration and come to a new, more solidarity-based migration policy, said Interior Minister Nancy Faeser. But even after the agreement, sharp criticism of the uniform asylum procedure is inevitable. How should the reform of the asylum procedure work? And what does the agreement mean? An overview.
EU asylum summit paves the way for asylum procedures: agreement on reform of the CEAS
The agreement reached at the asylum summit enables asylum procedures at Europe’s external borders for the first time, so that people with few chances of being admitted are not even allowed to enter the EU EU come. There should be asylum centers near the border, from where migrants are to be deported directly.
Italy, Greece and Austria prevailed with the demand to be able to deport rejected migrants to so-called safe third countries. These include countries such as Tunisia and Albania. Germany wanted to prevent this if the deportees have no close connection to the third country, for example through their family. According to the EU Commission and the Swedish Council Presidency, however, it is sufficient if the migrants have only traveled through.
Who is affected by the EU asylum procedure?
External border procedures should initially only apply to migrants from countries that have an EU average recognition rate of less than 20 percent. This applies, for example, to people from Türkiye, India, Tunisia, Serbia or Albania. The process should last a maximum of 12 weeks. However, some are exempt from the asylum procedure. The majority of refugees, for example from Syria, Afghanistan or Sudan, should continue to have the right to normal procedures.
Basically anyone fleeing persecution or serious harm in their country of origin has Right to apply for international protection. The right to asylum is enshrined in Article 18 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. In Germany, all asylum seekers have the right to an asylum procedure in which the individual reasons for fleeing are carefully examined. The right to asylum in Germany is defined by Article 16a of the Basic Law (GG). Emergency situations such as poverty, civil wars, natural disasters or a lack of prospects are therefore fundamentally excluded as reasons for granting asylum under Article 16a of the Basic Law.
EU agrees on asylum procedures at external borders – criticism after EU migration summit
Federal Minister of the Interior Nancy Faser (SPD) called the agreement in Luxembourg “historic”. However, Faeser was not able to assert himself with the demand for exceptions for families with children from the border procedures. Not even a handful of countries supported the federal government. The German demand was recorded in a so-called protocol note, a written additional declaration.
But there is also criticism of the future uniform EU asylum procedure. The association Pro Asyl spoke of a “frontal attack on the right to asylum”. Of the traffic light parties, they see themselves in particular greensbut also the SPD, subjected to harsh criticism from supporters. They fear an increasing “isolation” of the EU. The asylum compromise could mean an ordeal, especially for the Greens. Amnesty International warned of a “human rights taboo breach” against the spirit of the coalition agreement in the event of German approval.
After EU ministers’ asylum summit: Poland and Hungary reject reform
Poland and Hungary also categorically reject the EU asylum reform, but for different reasons. In the future, they are to pay a fine of 20,000 euros for every migrant they do not accept. The money is to flow into a fund from which migration projects are financed. Whether Warsaw or Budapest will ever pay is uncertain.
Hungary and Poland want to bring the issue back to the table at the EU summit on June 29th and 30th in Brussels. In addition, the EU countries still have to come to an agreement with the European Parliament. This is considered very difficult, since the positions are “miles” apart, according to diplomats. The federal government is pushing for the asylum reform to be completed by the European elections in June 2024.
CEAS forms the basis for a common EU asylum system
The EU’s asylum policy aims to grant an appropriate status to any third-country national in need of international protection in one of the Member States and to ensure compliance with the principle of non-refoulement. The EU has been working on the Common European Asylum System (CEAS) since 1999. Today’s core element of the common system is the EU-wide harmonization of protection and reception standards. They are intended to ensure that asylum seekers are granted international protection under the same conditions throughout the EU.
Last year there were around 966,000 asylum applications across the EU. Overall, by far the most asylum applications in the EU were made in Germany in 2022 – a total of 226,467. Last year, Germany recorded the highest number of asylum applications since 2016 world on Sunday citing a confidential report on the migration and refugee situation. (bohy/afp)
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