EU migration control made by Gaddafi?

An article from OpenDemocracy by Prof. Gregor Noll (Lund University) and Mariagiulia Giuffré (doctoral candidate at the School of International Studies, University of Trento):

“[T]here is a far-reaching consensus that a government [such as the Gaddafi Government] that uses indiscriminate lethal force to retain power is, as the diplomatic phrasebook has it, “unacceptable”. Yet, over the past six years, it has been perfectly acceptable for EU governments to outsource its border protection to an authoritarian leader with a dismal human rights record…. We, the citizens of the EU, should also be reminded that for over three years now, we have relied on Gaddafi and his state apparatus to keep asylum seekers and other migrants away from our doors….”

Click here for article.


Filed under Analysis, European Union, Italy, Libya, Mediterranean

2 responses to “EU migration control made by Gaddafi?

  1. Guest

    I generally concur with the article’s contents. However, it should be observed that:

    1. legally, the interception of migrants at sea does not represent a border control measure (hypotetically, not even for EU forces), since it takes place outside the MS’s territorial waters and it is not covered by any other int’l/domestic law instrument on border control (see e.g., the Italian Court of Cassation, Decision No. 32960, 8 September 2010);

    2. the possibility of carrying out joint interceptions is not mentioned in any of the agreements reported in the article (not even in the – unpublished – February 2009 Protocol); they only refer to “joint patrols”.

    I suggest reading this paper on the matter (Matteo Tondini, “Fishers of Men? The Interception of Migrants in the Mediterranean Sea and Their Forced Return to Libya”):

    • Thanks for the observations. The abstract for Dr Tondini’s “Fishers of Men?” paper is available here. I believe this is the proper link to the Court of Cassation case. Click here. (Corte Cassazione Penale, sezione prima – Sentenza n. 32960/2010 Minimize – Corte di Cassazione Penale, sezione prima – Sentenza n. 32960 del 08/09/2010 – Stranieri – Immigrazione clandestina – Intercettazione di natanti adibiti al trasporto dei migranti clandestini – Competenza territoriale – Non vi è giurisdizione italiana quando i responsabili siano intercettati fuori dalle acque territoriali (oltre il limite di 12 miglia dalla costa) e che provengono da Paesi che non abbiano ratificato la convenzione di Montego Bay. Le autorità italiane, poi, non possono procedere al loro arresto quando l’inseguimento inizi in acque internazionali.)

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