The Refugee Crisis and the EU’s Externalisation of Integrated Border Management to Libya and Turkey

Author (Person)
Series Title
Series Details Volume 2018, Number 6
Publication Date December 2018
Content Type


Irregular migration in recent years has thrown Europe off-balance, with the rise in Euroscepticism indicating the conflict between national sovereignty and the need to find international solutions to transboundary challenges. Rather than focusing on neofunctional spillover occurring internally, this paper focuses on exogenous factors that trigger integration in the European Union (EU).

The analysis addresses the following research question: What has been the effect of the 2011 Arab Spring and the 2015 ‘refugee crisis’ on the institutionalisation of EU border management? It is argued that the EU has externalised integrated border management to neighbouring countries or regions to fulfil its internal border management objectives. Libya and Turkey are used as case studies both due to their relevance to the EU as neighbouring transit countries for migrants and because of their differing domestic situations and relations with Europe. While Libya has moved closer to re-establishing a centralised government and Turkey has established a new Directorate-General for Migration Management in its Ministry of Interior, the EU itself has also transformed since the onset of the refugee crisis.

This study explores examples such as the widened mandate of FRONTEX and the negotiation of the ‘EU-Turkey deal’ to demonstrate how the EU has adapted to external developments. Libya and Turkey will also be contrasted in terms of the progress that has been achieved at an EU level. Therefore, this study does not see third countries merely as passive recipients of EU foreign policy but also as agents in and of themselves, influencing EU institutions from the ‘outside-in’.

Source Link
Subject Categories ,
Subject Tags , , ,
Countries / Regions ,
International Organisations