Background: The Seville Summit


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The EU summit (European Council) in Seville agreed on far-reaching EU policies regarding illegal immigration, with potential huge impact on human rights, asylum-seekers and developing countries.

See Seville Conclusions on asylum & immigration

The various elements referred to in the Conclusions are as follows:

1) Adoption of EU immigration and asylum law

- See Overview of proposals and legislation agreed

2) Illegal Immigration

- proposed Action Plan on illegal immigration, from Commission Nov. 2001: (COM 2001 572)
- Action Plan on illegal immigration agreed by Council Feb. 28/2002: doc 6612/1/02; OJ 2002 C 142
- report on implementation of Action Plan: doc 10009/02 (final)

- Directive on mutual recognition of expulsion orders: Directive 2001/40
- Directive on carrier sanctions: Directive 2001/51
- agreed text, framework decision against trafficking in persons: Framework Decision
- agreed text, directive and framework decision on facilitation of illegal entry and residence:
Framework Decision  |  Directive 2001/40  |  Statewatch analysis
- proposed Directive on residence permits for victims of trafficking or facilitation: COM (2002) 71

readmission and return
- Commission Green Paper on return policy: Green Paper
- proposed EC/Hong Kong readmission agreement: readmission EC/Hong Kong
- Council conclusions on criteria for future readmission agreements, and further target states:
doc 7990/02
- note EC readmission treaty initialled with Sri Lanka, May 2002; negotiations underway or approved with Morocco, Macao, Russia, Pakistan, Ukraine

3) External Borders

- Commission Communication on management of border controls: COM (2002) 233
- Statewatch analysis of Commission communication: Statewatch analysis
- Action Plan on external borders, agreed by JHA Council, 13 June 2002: 10019/02

4) Immigration, sea borders and third countries

- final Council conclusions on issue, JHA Council, 13 Jun 2002: 10017/02
- conclusions on punishing third states: 9917/3/02; see also Seville European Council Conclusions
- earlier drafts of these Council conclusions: 9027/1/02; doc 9027/2/02; doc 9027/3/02; doc 9027/4/02; doc 9796/02

Overview of EU Immigration and Asylum proposals

See Statewatch overall analysis of EU immigation and asylum discussions: Analysis

[Note: there are links below to pages from SEMDOC, Statewatch's dedicated website on EU Justice and Home Affairs issues, available on a subscription basis. For more information, see foot of this page]


The EC Treaty requires the Council to adopt legislation in seven asylum-related areas by May 1, 2004. By June 2002, the Council was still discussing three proposals covering four of these seven areas.

The areas are:

Responsibility for asylum applications ('Dublin II')
- Commission proposal for Regulation, July 2001: COM (2001) 447
- proposed redraft of articles: doc. 5623/02
[- texts on state-of-play of discussions: 6344/02, 6485/02, 8572/02, 8702/02, 9305/02]
- questions to JHA Council, 13 June 2002: 9563/02, 9563/1/02
- revised Commission proposal due
- Seville deadline for agreement: Dec 2002

Reception conditions for asylum-seekers
- Commission proposal for Directive, April 2001: COM (2001) 181
- Council 'general approach' agreed, 25/26 April 2002: doc. 8351/02

Asylum procedures
- Commission proposal for Directive, April 2001: COM (2000) 578
- Council conclusions on future of Directive: doc. 15107/1/01
- revised Commission proposal, June 2002: COM (2002) 326
- Seville deadline for agreement: Dec 2003

Definition of 'refugee'
- Commission proposal for Directive, Sept 2001: COM (2001) 510
- text on state-of-play of discussions in Council: doc. 7882/02
- Seville deadline for agreement: June 2003

Temporary protection
- Commission proposal for Directive, May 2000: COM (2000) 303
- Directive agreed by Council, July 2001: Directive 2001/55

Subsidiary protection (see 'definition of refugee', above)

Balance of effort ('burden sharing)

- Council Decision on European Refugee Fund, Sept 2000: Decision

Legal Migration

The Commission has made proposals on the three most important aspects of migration law for legal migrants, but there has been no significant progress in the Council.

Family reunion
- Commission proposal, Dec. 1999: COM (1999) 638
- revised Commission proposal, Sept. 2000: COM (2000) 624
- Council reation, May 2001: doc. 9019/01
- revised Commission proposal, May 2002: COM (2002) 225
see: Statewatch analysis of revised Commission proposal
- Seville deadline for agreement: June 2003

Long-term residents
- Commission proposal for Directive, March 2001: COM (2001) 127
- under discussion in Council working party: see docs. 7558/02; room doc migr 4/02
- Seville deadline for agreement: June 2003

Migration for employment and self-employment
- Commission proposal for Directive, July 2001: COM (2001) 386
- Council working party began discussions March 2002

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