Conference: Asylum at the Frontiers of Europe – Realities and Legal Challenges

On May 11-12, Lund is hosting a conference convened by L/UMIN researchers Gregor Noll, Vladislava Stoyanova and Eleni Karageorgiou. The aim of the conference is to explore the dynamics of asylum in countries located in the south-eastern part of Europe as actors who influence the formation of European policies on asylum as well as refugee law and its content. Participating researchers include L/UMIN members Rebecca Thorburn Stern (UU) and Anna Bruce (LU), as well as asylum law researchers active across Europe.

Europe is currently faced with significant movements of persons fleeing war and violence. Despite the existence of a harmonized European asylum framework, which imposes common standards as to the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees, European countries have been responding on the basis of their national interests, signalling that asylum is first and foremost a national matter. This has raised questions as to the viability of the Common European Asylum System, while exposing European policies’ inherent tension between protection duties and security concerns. This conference sheds light on the role of national governments and neighbouring third countries in shaping asylum in Europe.

The conference is funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (The Swedish Foundation for Humanities and Social Sciences, www.rj.se/en).

Karageorgiou’s and Stoyanova’s third party intervention in Chowdury et al v Greece

The Faculty of Law at Lund University, through researchers Eleni Karageorgiou and Vladislava Stoyanova, intervened in a recent European Court of Human Rights judgment against Greece.

Chowdury et al v Greece covers severe forms of labor exploitation of migrants at strawberry farms in Greece. The Court found a violation of Article 4(2) of the ECHR, the right not to be subjected to forced labor, following the line of argument proposed by Karageorgiou and Stoyanova in their third party intervention.

So far the judgment has received extensive media coverage, including in the Guardian and in the New York Times.

The judgment is considered to be an important development of the Court’s jurisprudence.