management by abandonment

Nic Beuret writes on the economic and political pressures behind border controls and the EU’s ‘Fortress Europe’ anti-migrant measures.

Each year thousands of migrants die trying to make the perilous sea crossing from North Africa to the southern shores of the EU

Countries in the EU’s Schengen open border zone will be able to reimpose restrictions to prevent an influx of migrants, EU leaders have agreed. The measure is a response to pressure from France and Italy, who have been wrangling over thousands of illegal migrants from strife-torn North Africa. The EU will now create a new mechanism for the 25-nation Schengen zone, to allow for temporary border controls.

BBC, 24th June 2011

The last few years seem to have conjured forth a rush of changes to migration control in Europe. From the return of so-called ‘temporary’ border checks to harsher frontier policing, more money and greater powers for Frontex (the European border control agency), greater border surveillance as well as tougher ID checks, new entry requirements and greater limits on total non-EU numbers. It all speaks to the fact that borders are always in constant flux. They are less city walls and more Google-like algorithms, mutating to match changes in migratory movements and capital flows. Continue reading “management by abandonment”