“Returns are easier said than made. Third-country cooperation will be essential for the extension and implementation of readmission agreements, and this will depend on the effectiveness of a genuine partnership on an equal footing in the short and long term,” said Neidhardt. The reforms proposed by the Commission in 2016 and 2018 on asylum and return, on which the co-legislators have already reached a political agreement, but the negotiations have not been successful, are part of the new pact on migration and asylum (qualifications directive, directive on reception conditions, regulation on EU asylum agencies , EU resettlement framework and return directive). The 27 member states are expected to participate in the German-backed pact. Under the conditions, countries agree either to take in asylum seekers or to take over the repatriation of failed asylum seekers. Why now? The pact comes after years of disagreement over how to deal with refugees and asylum seekers arriving in countries like Greece and Italy, which have accused northern countries of not doing enough to support them. The European Union seems ready to reach a broad political agreement on a new EU pact on migration. Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said the 27 member states could pass the new law before the end of the year. Given that the pact must now be negotiated in the European Parliament and by the Member States, it is unlikely that it will be adopted in the near future. “Designed as a new beginning, this pact is actually designed to raise walls and reinforce fences.
Instead of offering a new approach to getting people to safety, it seems to be an attempt to rename a system that has failed for years, with terrible consequences. ” – Eve Geddie. An important aspect of the new migration and asylum pact allows EU countries that have so far refused to take in migrants – such as Poland, Hungary and Austria – to help reintegrate migrants who are not entitled to asylum or logistical assistance at the bloc`s borders. The Commission`s cooperation plan with third countries, which encourages it to take in refugees and migrants, to help them and to strengthen their own enforcement against smuggling, means that these relations will continue to be marked by the issue of immigration. The EU-Africa summit, postponed to 2021 because of Covid-19, could well take place in the shadow of this pact. This priority can also have unintended consequences: the 2016 agreement with Mali to stem irregular migration through Niger has reduced the number of irregular migrants who have crossed the route (and may have led to some decrease in the total flow, although not clear), but it indicates a diversion of migrants that has often resulted in much higher costs and risks.