EU votes to unify rules on detention of migrants

Today, I found this article in the IHT by Caroline Brothers. I wanted to share with you this pathetic news.

European Union lawmakers voted Wednesday to allow countries in the bloc to hold undocumented migrants in detention centers for up to 18 months and ban them from EU territory for five years.

Approved in this medieval French border city, which is home to a significant population of North Africans and Turks, the legislation establishes common rules for expelling foreigners who are detained on EU territory without permission to be there.

Described by critics like Amnesty International as “severely flawed” and an erosion of human rights standards, but by supporters as a balanced approach, the so-called return directive passed in the European Parliament by a vote of 369 to 197, with 106 deputies abstaining.

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Cimade released a statement Wednesday saying that it deplored the passage of what civil liberties groups have called “the directive of shame,” and said it was studying the possibility of contesting it before the European Court of Justice or the European Court of Human Rights.

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The vote came a day after António Guterres, the United Nations high commissioner for refugees, said that the world was dealing with “a complex mix of global challenges” that could threaten even more forced displacements than the 37.4 million people last year.

To read the whole article, please go here.