Chapter 10 The EU Refugee Crisis and the ‘Third-Phase’ Asylum Legislation – The End of the Harmonisation Approach or Its Revival?

In: Securitising Asylum Flows
Author:
Giulia Vicini
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Abstract

The objective of this article is to assess the current role of ‘harmonisation’ in the implementation and reform of the Common European Asylum System (ceas). The harmonisation approach seemed to have lost much of its relevance in the Commission 2015 Agenda, which represents the first strategy set forth by the EU in order to face the ongoing ‘refugee crisis’. On the basis of that finding, the article enquires into the objectives of the ceas looking both at its historical development, through a first and a second-phase legislation, and at the proposals for third-generation instruments which are now under negotiation by the EU institutions. In particular, this article firstly attempts to identify the reasons for the harmonization approach’s failure by looking at its underlying rationale; secondly, it is put forward that harmonisation and solidarity represent preconditions for ensuring a full and effective implementation of the ceas and that, by consequence, their non-achievement best accounts for the system’s shortcomings. Finally, the article looks into the EU assessment of the first- and second- generation asylum instruments, where the European Commission reaches the conclusion that an additional reason for the shortcomings of the ceas are the too high protection standards within the EU. This premise is indeed driving the third-generation proposals.

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Securitising Asylum Flows

Deflection, Criminalisation and Challenges for Human Rights

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