Outsourcing Border Control: A normative analysis of the externalization of migration policy in the Mediterranean region
Law and Political Science
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AbstractThe externalization of migration policies, also known as the externalization of border control, has emerged as an increasingly popular way for more developed countries to tackle the issue of irregular migration. In the Mediterranean region, increasing migration from North Africa to Europe is closely associated with the concept of security – security for the countries that must face constant flows of irregular migrants, and security for the migrants who must face the perils of crossing the Mediterranean sea. In this study I explore the normative aspects of this dilemma, and examine if and how the externalization of migration policies can be justified using a normative, given-that analysis. The analysis is centred around the value ’security’, and based on two different moral and theoretical approaches to the concept – the traditional, state-centric approach and the more modern, humanitarian approach that places the security of the individual above the security of the state. I find that while externalization can possibly be legitimized from a state-perspective in the short run, it is not a desirable solution to migration problems in the long run. From an individual perspective it is not possible to legitimize the externalization of border control as long as there is no safe-guard for migrants’ rights.