The Equality Challenge
Edited by Sonia Morano-Foadi and Micaela Malena
Chapter 4: Inequality for asylum-seekers and people entitled to protection in the European Union
When the European Union assumed legal competence for asylum, migration and borders in 1999, the Member States explicitly stated that the new EU asylum policy should be governed by international refugee law. In conferring power on the EU to adopt legislation and policy in this field, the Member States stipulated that measures on asylum must be ‘in accordance with the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951 and the Protocol of 31 January 1967 relating to the status of refugees and other relevant treaties’. The EU reiterated this objective in 2009, in the revised legal framework which governs the further development of the Common European Asylum Policy (CEAS), in Article 78 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), in its Title V on the ‘Area of Freedom, Security and Justice’. Article 67(2) provides that the EU ‘. . . shall ensure the absence of internal border controls for persons and shall frame a common policy on asylum, immigration and external border control, based on solidarity between Member States, which is fair towards thirdcountry nationals . . .’. While the concept of such a ‘fair’ policy towards third-country nationals is not defined in the Treaty, it recalls entitlements arising from the principles of non-discrimination in human rights law, as well as procedural fairness and natural justice.
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