‘Let them in’: the road to humanising the EU’s asylum policy

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In a thought-provoking talk, Violeta Moreno-Lax asks whether death has become ‘a means of border control’ for the EU and its Member States. I concur that the EU and its Member States bear responsibility for the mounting death toll as people try to reach the EU’s territory for safety. Indeed, the construction of a non-entry regime which illegalises ‘spontaneous arrivals’ (persons who knock at the EU’s door ‘uninvited’ in search of protection), pushes them back and put their lives at risk is anathema to a humane asylum policy.

The EU’s hostile environment is in stark - and troubling - contrast with the EU’s swift opening of its borders to refugees fleeing Ukraine as it very promptly activated its 2001 temporary protection framework - for the first time - in the immediate aftermath of the outbreak of war in Ukraine. This paper offers thoughts on whether the triggering of temporary protection for people fleeing Ukraine can prompt a shift towards greater hospitality in the EU’s asylum policy. The paper considers the reconceptualisation of refugees and asylum seekers’ admission to the EU’s territory as the foundation of a humane EU asylum policy.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2023
EventDeath and Migration: The Human Rights Perspective - Åbo Akademi University, Institute for Human Rights , Turku, Finland
Duration: 5 Oct 20235 Oct 2023
http://The Institute for Human Rights at Åbo Akademi University


SeminarDeath and Migration
Internet address


  • temporary protection
  • Ukraine
  • EU asylum policy
  • ethical vulnerability analysis
  • Admission to the EU's territory


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