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Abstract: • The protection of asylum-seekers in Europe is dealt with under three principal bodies of law: the UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees of 1951, the law of the European Union and the soft law developed by the Council of Europe.
• Member states of the Council of Europe are also bound by the judgments of the European Convention on Human Rights; although the convention makes no reference to refugee protection, its provisions and the judgments of its court in Strasbourg impose important obligations on states in respect of asylum.
• The entry into force of the Amsterdam Treaty in 1999 initiated the first phase of the creation of the Common European Asylum System (CEAS), which aimed to harmonize refugee protection among member states while enabling them to meet their international obligations in that respect.
• The harmonizing measures adopted by the EU have been subject to severe criticism and the practices of member states reveal a systemic failure to comply with international refugee protection obligations.
• While there have been improvements in European refugee policy, significant challenges must be addressed before Europe can regain its reputation as a champion of the rights of the refugee. This is given particular urgency by recent events in North Africa, which may lead to large numbers of persons fleeing violence and disorder.
Abstract: This article addresses the management of unauthorised migration from Africa to Europe. We
review eight policy measures and explore how they relate to prominent policy narratives, centred on
security, co-operation and protection of migrants. We also examine the specific mechanisms through
which the policy measures function: direct control, deterrence and dissuasion. Analysis of policy
narratives helps explain the ascendance of externalised migration control, such as pre-border
patrolling. Furthermore, our analysis shows how the narrative of protection can be aligned with
direct control measures and constitute a double-edged sword for migrants. The text focuses on
maritime migration from West Africa to Spain’s Canary Islands. We draw in part on ethnographic
data from fieldwork in Senegal in order to assess the impact of specific measures on the target
population of prospective migrants.
Abstract: This handbook is intended to serve as a document that provides relevant information on issues that external actors who interact with diasporas in development and peacebuilding will encounter. It does not present simple replicable techniques, tools or instruments; rather, the authors aim to explain the underlying philosophy and aspects of process involved in facilitating participation of diasporas in development and peacebuilding (Pretty et al., 1995: ii). How to best apply these principles will vary from context to context. The document is based on experiences with various diaspora communities in the five European countries (Finland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Norway), though many of the examples cited focus on the Somali diaspora and, more generally, on diasporas originating from Africa. A number of those experiences are described in detail in separate text boxes.
Abstract: This report compiles the latest evidence of European countries' complicity in the CIA's programmes in the context of the fight against terrorism in the aftermath of the 11 September 2001 attacks in the USA.
"The EU has utterly failed to hold member states accountable for the abuses they've committed," said Nicolas Beger, Director of Amnesty International's European Institutions Office.
"These abuses occurred on European soil. We simply can't allow Europe to join the US in becoming an 'accountability-free' zone. The tide is slowly turning with some countries starting investigations but much more needs to be done." Intergovernmental organizations such as the Council of Europe, the European Union and the UN have been at the forefront of investigating human rights violations associated with the CIA rendition and secret detention programmes.
Following disclosures in their reports, inquiries into state complicity or legal processes aimed at individual responsibility took place or are currently in progress in countries such as Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Sweden and the United Kingdom.
Abstract: Afghan civilians deserve amends from warring parties for deaths, injuries, and property
losses—that is, some form of recognition and monetary compensation. Under international
law and agreements signed with the Afghan government, the troop contributing nations
(TCNs) of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are not liable for damage to
civilian property or civilian injury or death as a result of lawful operations. However, most
ISAF members now offer payments when such losses occur. This is a marked improvement
from the early days of the conflict when the US and its NATO allies declined to address civilian
harm. CIVIC’s research into the experiences of ISAF troops and Afghan civilians demonstrates that
when international military forces provide payment (henceforth called “compensation” to
indicate both monetary and in-kind help), especially combined with an apology for harm,
civilian hostility toward international forces decreases. However, the effectiveness of these
payments has been limited by the lack of uniform policies across ISAF nations, limited information
gathering about civilian harm generally and, in many cases, insensitive requirements
that civilians suffering losses take the initiative to file claims.
This report describes the policies and practices of major ISAF TCNs. It finds that soldiers as
well as civilians view amends for harm favorably. The process of investigation, negotiation
of payment, and offers of formal compensation are opportunities to strengthen relationships
with local leaders and communities, to explain what happened, and acknowledge loss.
Abstract: In 2001, when foreign militaries – including the American, Belgian, British, Canadian, Danish, German, Italian, and Turkish – entered the country, Afghans welcomed them warmly, strewing flowers as they passed through towns and villages. There was widespread hope that the country would finally see peace and stability after decades of war.
Eight years later, however, there is still a consistent failure to establish the appropriate mechanisms for security and development in Afghanistan. Since the Bonn Agreement, both security assistance and development assistance have taken a short term view – primarily addressing immediate and acute problems rather than identifying and responding to underlying weaknesses. Such a “quick fix” approach has cost time and popular support from those eager for change, and has wasted resources and opportunities. Significant amounts of aid are re-routed back to the donors’ home countries through contractors and consultants. The creation of parallel structures of governance such as command and control centers and prisons has undermined national authority, inhibited national initiative, weakened security, and slowed development. Prospects for sustainable development are slim, and the initially close relationship between the Afghan public and international forces has deteriorated.
Underlying the current approach is the assumption that Afghanistan could only be rescued by an enormous international intervention. However the presence of the international community, even if extensive and well-directed, will not be useful if Afghans are not in charge of their own recovery and development. Although the international community and the Afghan government have rhetorically committed themselves to inclusive nation-building, significant progress has yet to be made in including a wide cross-section of Afghan society.
Abstract: The summer of 2009 has been without a doubt a bad one for ISAF, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan. The increase in fighting this summer has led to debates in most of the troop contributing nations as to how they perceive Afghanistan’s future and their role in it. A complex insurgency has spread across the country as different groups have come together under the banner of the Taliban fighting both the international troops and the Afghan government. In the south and the east of Afghanistan, where guerilla warfare has been ongoing for at least three years, the fighting has intensified and an increase in the technical abilities and tactical skill of the Taliban insurgents has taken a heavy toll on coalition soldiers. In the north and west of Afghanistan—previously considered safer areas—the security situation has worsened considerably and troops who had been able to focus predominantly on reconstruction work are increasingly finding themselves soldiering in far more traditional ways. The Afghanistan general elections of 20 August can be considered a very limited success at best, not only because of the extensive and seemingly well based accusations of vote rigging, but also because in many parts of the country although the ISAF forces could secure the voting sites themselves, they could not provide sufficient security to stop Taliban intimidation from dissuading many Afghans from going to the polls in the first place. As the fighting has increased across the country, it is the Afghan civilians who are paying highest price.
Abstract: Terrorism is not a new phenomenon, nor is it likely to disappear anytime soon. It is not the exclusive domain of any single religion or ideology, nor do all terrorists come from the same socioeconomic class or share the same mental pathologies.1 In part, the diversity within contemporary terrorism is what makes it so great a challenge. This report describes, in great detail, the state of terrorism in Western countries over the course of 2008.
Before turning to terrorism events in the West during 2008 and key developments within Western countries’ legal systems, we are going to pinpoint a few broad trends—a few currents that run through the various incidents and cases that follow. As this report will show, concerns about the contemporary connection between criminal activities and terrorism are clear in Bulgaria, a country rife with organized crime. An April 2008 parliamentary report charged that profits from the country’s drug trade were channeled to Middle Eastern terrorist groups.
Abstract: The success of international efforts to foster security and economic growth in Afghanistan is increasingly linked to wider stabilization and development in the states in its proximity. In order to elucidate the challenges in the region and draw recommendations for the Italian G8 Presidency, an Experts Meeting on Afghanistan and Regional Stabilization was organized by Ipalmo, ARGO and Carnegie Europe on May 28-29th 2009 in Rome. Participants noted five areas of interest that could be taken into consideration at the June 2008 meeting of G8 Foreign Ministers in Trieste: 1) The countries of the region are interlinked in a regional security complex which requires a regional approach in response; 2) Constructive action by the states of the region and existing regional institutions need to be reinforced; 3) Border management is necessary to curb illicit trafficking while encouraging a better flow of resources across the region; 4) Security remains a major priority in the region; and 5) Greater economic cooperation would increase welfare for populations while encouraging cooperation and trust in the region.
Abstract: Contrairement à une idée reçue, la France et le Royaume-Uni ne sont pas les seules puissances nucléaires en Europe. En effet, depuis 1954, dans le cadre de l’OTAN, les États-Unis stationnent des forces nucléaires dans plusieurs pays du continent. Reliques de la Guerre froide, ces forces devaient originellement faire face à la supériorité des troupes conventionnelles du pacte de Varsovie. De plus de 7 000 armes nucléaires tactiques, réparties dans une dizaine d’États européens au milieu des années 1970, l’arsenal n’a cessé de diminuer, à la suite de l’éclatement de l’URSS, pour parvenir au chiffre de 350 armes en 2007. Depuis le début de la décennie, la question de l’utilité de ces armements, et donc indirectement d’un possible retrait, est de plus en plus souvent évoquée.
En toute discrétion entre 2005 et 2008, les États-Unis ont dénucléarisé deux de leurs plus grandes bases européennes, Ramstein (Allemagne) et Lakenheath (Royaume-Uni). Elles abritaient au total 180 bombes nucléaires. Indéniablement, ce désarmement apporte un nouvel éclairage sur cette posture nucléaire de l’OTAN. À ce titre, les 240 bombes restantes ont sans doute définitivement perdu leur rôle militaire au profit d’un rôle politique. Les raisons de ce retrait ne se limitent pas seulement à des problèmes de sécurité dans ces bases. Non, d’autres problématiques comme l’évolution de l’Alliance atlantique, la politique de chacun des pays hôtes, le renouvellement des flottes à capacité duale, l’utilité stratégique, sans compter la pression de l’opinion publique soutenue par des organisations pacifistes, contribuent et vont contribuer à limiter ce stationnement d’armes. Désormais seuls l’Allemagne, la Belgique, les Pays-Bas, l’Italie et la Turquie ont sur leur territoire des armes nucléaires américaines, mais pour combien de temps encore ? Demain, l’Europe va-t-elle être une zone libre d’armes nucléaires américaines ?
Abstract: Urban radicalism in Europe as portrayed by the recent riots in Athens is a constant worry of the European security services, since there is ample evidence of wider connections between radicals and terrorists.
There are two major themes to be looked upon. Firstly the relationship between the extreme-leftist terrorist groups that operate in the so-called "Mediterranean axis" - France, Italy, Greece and Spain - and secondly, the connection of these groups to Islamic extremists.
The radical - anarchist movement in Europe is pretty strong and well organized with thousands of loyal supporters. Back in 2005, the riots in Paris proved that the radicals and second-generation Muslim immigrants in France were able to form the political agenda of that time, although they were not successful in preventing Sarkozy’s ascendance to power 18 months later.
Abstract: A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll of 17 nations finds that majorities in only nine of them believe that al Qaeda was behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the United States. In no country does a majority agree on another possible perpetrator, but in most countries significant minorities cite the US government itself and, in a few countries, Israel. These responses were given spontaneously to an open-ended question that did not offer response options. On average, 46 percent say that al Qaeda was behind the attacks while 15 percent say the US government, seven percent Israel, and seven percent some other perpetrator. One in four say they do not know. WPO_911_Sep08_graph.jpgGiven the extraordinary impact the 9/11 attacks have had on world affairs, it is remarkable that seven years later there is no international consensus about who was behind them," comments Steven Kull, director of WorldPublicOpinion.org.
Abstract: This bulletin contains information about Amnesty International’s main concerns in Europe and
Central Asia between July and December 2007. Not every country in the region is reported on; only
those where there were significant developments in the period covered by the bulletin, or where
Amnesty International (AI) took specific action.
A number of individual country reports have been issued on the concerns featured in this bulletin.
References to these are made under the relevant country entry. In addition, more detailed
information about particular incidents or concerns may be found in Urgent Actions and News
Service Items issued by AI.
This bulletin is published by AI every six months.
Abstract: U.S. policymakers have made securing and maintaining foreign contributions
to the stabilization and reconstruction of Iraq a major priority since the preparation
period for the launch of Operation Iraqi Freedom in March 2003. This report
highlights and discusses important changes in financial and personnel contributions
from foreign governments to Iraq since 2003.
To date, foreign donors have pledged an estimated $16.4 billion in grants and
loans for Iraq reconstruction, with most major pledges originating at a major donors'
conference in Madrid, Spain, in October 2003. However, only a small part of the
pledges have been committed or disbursed to the World Bank and United Nations
Development Group Trust Funds for Iraq. The largest non-U.S. pledges of grants
have come from Japan, the European Commission, the United Kingdom, Canada,
South Korea, and the United Arab Emirates. The World Bank, the International
Monetary Fund, Japan, and Saudi Arabia have pledged the most loans and export
Currently, 33 countries including the United States have some level of troops
on the ground in Iraq or supporting Iraq operations from nearby locations. Those
forces are working under the rubric of one of several organizations — the
Multi-National Force-Iraq (MNF-I), the NATO Training Mission-Iraq (NTM-I); or
the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI). Currently, the largest
troop contributors, in addition to the United States, are the United Kingdom, Georgia,
Australia, South Korea, and Poland. Some of these key contributors have announced
their intention to reduce or withdraw their forces from Iraq during 2008. The total
number of non-U.S. coalition troop contributions has declined since the early
stabilization efforts, as other countries have withdrawn their contingents or
substantially reduced their size.
Abstract: A l’occasion d’une visite en Italie, pour recevoir le Prix international des droits de l’Homme de la municipalité d’Orvieto, la Présidente de la Fédération internationale des ligues des droits de l’Homme, Souhayr Belhassen, a lancé un appel aux autorités italiennes, pour qu’elle respectent le droit des migrants, et fustigé « l’amalgame regrettable entre immigration et criminalité » inclut dans un paquet de réformes sur la Sécurité adopté par le Conseil des Ministres italien le 21 mai dernier.
Abstract: Les missions militaires italiennes à l’étranger au cours de ces dernières années peuvent être considérées comme un « fait politique total ». Elles sont en effet caractérisées par l’entrelacement de multiples aspects et acteurs de la société italienne ainsi que de leurs relations avec l’extérieur. Ces aspects et acteurs, ainsi que les multiples interactions en jeu, ne sont pas évidents à analyser, les éléments empiriques nécessaires à une étude sociologique approfondie n’étant pas toujours disponibles. En effet, il s’agit d’un univers d’activités qui oscillent entre le public et le secret, et parfois même entre le légal et l’illégal. De plus, les perspectives interprétatives et d’analyse pour la recherche dans ce domaine ne semblent pas encore suffisamment adaptées aux changements qui se sont succédés depuis le début des années 1980 et davantage encore au cours de ces dernières années. En effet, les conséquences de la « Révolution dans les affaires militaires », de la révolution technologique et du développement néo-libéral ont provoqué une prolifération et une hybridation de différents éléments et acteurs qu’il n’est pas toujours facile d’appréhender au travers d’un cadre d’analyse unitaire. C'est cette prolifération des hybrides que cet article analyse en mettant en évidence certains des mouvements de la frontière entre police et militaire, sécurité intérieure et sécurité extérieure, public et privé induits par les nouvelles missions militaires italiennes à l'étranger depuis les années 1990. Il s'attache également à éclairer certains de effets produits par ces transformations sur la société italienne.
Abstract: Thousands of international troops remain in Afghanistan, but some members of this coalition are more willing than others. FP looks at whose militaries are pulling their weight—and who could do far more.
Abstract: Agacés d’être perçus comme une menace, les États de la rive sud de la Méditerranée risquent d’opposer une fin de non-recevoir à la présidence française de l’Union européenne si celle-ci s’aventurait un peu trop ostensiblement sur ce terrain. Mais c’est bien de cela dont il s’agit, en partie, derrière ce vaste chantier.
Perverti et trop souvent invoqué de manière irréfléchie, le concept de sécurité reste néanmoins un objectif dont découle la réalisation concomitante des autres aspects du projet de la présidence française. L’idée de la sécurité n’existe pas sans les usages dont elle fait l’objet. Si la définition minimaliste de la
sécurité est « l’absence de menaces, ou de craintes de menaces, sur les valeurs centrales », reste à déterminer ce à quoi l’on se réfère : aux États membres, à l’Union méditerranéenne en tant que telle, aux individus qui composent les différentes populations ? Par ailleurs, à quelles menaces s’agit-il de faire
face : les menaces militaires et/ou non militaires (économiques, environnementales, pertes d’identité…) ? Bien qu’elles puissent apparaître comme le fruit d’une construction intellectuelle sans fondement concret, ces questions sont au coeur du projet d’Union de la Méditerranée comme elles
ont été le fondement des multiples initiatives de part et d’autre de la « mare
nostrum ». L’absence d’entente entre les parties prenantes sur l’étendue que doit couvrir ce volet risque de faire de l’Union méditerranéenne, au mieux une construction institutionnelle parmi d’autres, au pire un échec de plus dans cette région du monde, avec les conséquences humaines que l’on devine.
Abstract: La présente évaluation de la politique des vingt-sept pays membres de l’Union
européenne en faveur des droits de l’Homme répond au développement récent des
« investissements éthiques », constitués pour une grand part d’actions d’entreprises privées, mais également d’obligations d’Etat. C’est cette partie « obligataire » dont il s’agit ici d’éclairer les fondements dans une perspective « éthique », dans l’optique de favoriser les investissements dans les Etats menant une politique plus active de promotion des droits de l’homme. Cette étude s’inscrit dans la continuité des études élaborées en 2001, 2003 et 2005.
Abstract: President Sarkozy has recently said that France may re-integrate into NATO's military command. This abrupt change in French policy opens doors to a much-needed improvement in EU-NATO relations. The two institutions have been barely co-operating on important missions like Kosovo, which leaves Europe ill-prepared for security challenges on its borders. But for the EU and NATO to really turn a corner, the UK must first agree with France how independent from the US, Europe's defences should become. The US will need to give France command posts in NATO, and Turkey will have to drop its opposition to Cyprus' co-operation with the alliance.
Abstract: Erich Priebke was born on 29 July 1913 in Hennigsdorf/ Germany. He was a Hauptsturmfxc3xbchrer (Captain) of the Waffen-SS. He served under Obersturmbannfxc3xbchrer Herbert Kappler (cf. "related cases") in Rome, where he was responsible for liasing with the Italian police. On 23 March 1944, a bomb planted by the Italian resistance killed 33 German soldiers. As a consequence, Kappler drew up a list of 320 civilians who were to be executed as a reprisal. In total, 335 civilians were executed on 24 March 1944 in the Ardeatine Caves near Rome. During his trial, Priebke confessed having directed the massacre with the help of a certain Karl Hass.
Abstract: Freedom House welcomes the vote by the United Nations General Assembly to elect Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina for the two open seats for Eastern European States in yesterday's election to the UN Human Rights Council. Belarus, the third candidate for the East Europe vacancies, was defeated in a tight race following a vigorous campaign by numerous human rights organizations and countries opposed to the candidacy of a country with one of the world's most abysmal human rights records.
Abstract: In March 2003, a U.S.-led multinational force began operations in Iraq. At that time, 48 nations, identified as a "coalition of the willing," offered political, military, and financial support for U.S. efforts in Iraq, with 38 nations other than the United States providing troops. In addition, international donors met in Madrid in October 2003 to pledge funding for the reconstru#ction of Iraq's infrastructure, which had deteriorated after multiple wars and decades of neglect under the previous regime.
This testimony discusses (1) the troop commitments other countries have made to operations in Iraq, (2) the funding the United States has provided to support other countries' participation in the multinational force, and (3) the financial support international donors have provided to Iraq reconstruction efforts.
Abstract: The mission of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Afghanistan
is seen as a test of the alliance's political will and military capabilities. The allies are
seeking to create a "new" NATO, able to go beyond the European theater and combat
new threats such as terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.
Afghanistan is NATO's first "out-of-area" mission beyond Europe. The purpose of
the mission is the stabilization and reconstruction of Afghanistan. The mission is a
difficult one because it must take place while combat operations against Taliban
U.N. Security Council resolutions govern NATO's responsibilities. The NATOled
International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) faces formidable obstacles:
shoring up a weak government in Kabul; using military capabilities in a distant
country with rugged terrain; and rebuilding a country devastated by war and troubled
by a resilient narcotics trade. NATO's mission statement lays out the essential
elements of the task of stabilizing and rebuilding the country: train the Afghan army,
police, and judiciary; support the government in counter-narcotics efforts; develop
a market infrastructure; and suppress the Taliban.