Appeal to the European Parliament, the European Commission, and the European Council
CALL FOR A RENEWED EUROPEAN POLICY IN FAVOUR OF THE DEMOCRATIC TRANSITION IN THE MAGHREB AND THE RIGHTS OF MIGRANTS
Europe is presented with a unique occasion to heal the historic wounds that divide it from the countries of the Maghreb, accompanying the democratic transition in course. But in these crucial days the European Union has been absent, and has appeared before the eyes of the world as divided between Sarkozy’s diplomacy of bombs, the xenophobia of the Italian government, and German indifference.
The island of Lampedusa, even more than a tragedy, represents the incapacity of the national political classes to build on the desire for change in the countries of the Maghreb to launch a politics redefining the relations between the global north and the global south, going beyond the fallacious and cynical logic of permanent emergency merely serving electoral ends.
National policies on migration have until now shown themselves to be inadequate for the management of the phenomenon (ensuring welcome, insertion etc), inadequate for the respect of individual rights, both civil and social, and inadequate for international cooperation and aiding development.
As the recent quarrel between France and Italy over the management of the Tunisian migrants demonstrates, the lack of a unified European migration policy has led to a confused, uncertain and contradictory situation in which it has become difficult to guarantee the civil, political, social and economic rights of migrants and those requesting asylum.
Fully conscious that welcoming those escaping from war and poverty is necessary but not sufficient, we support the request emerging from all north african social movements for democratic, social and economic development of the Maghreb, transforming the area into one where young generations can finally live their future.
Convinced that only a relaunch of a united European politics will finally allow the expression of a foreign and security policy serving peace, democracy and justice at the international level, we declare the priority of the definition of a new European neighbourhood policy for the countries of the Maghreb and for the co-development and growth for the entire region of the Mediterranean starting from the following points:
1. Excercise of diplomatic and political pressure from the European Union to guarantee the full respect of the democratic demands and aspirations of the people of North.
2. Ratification of a European directive allowing for jobseeker resident permit, according to criteria to be established in agreement with the countries of the Maghreb, creating a single, legal and simple channel for North-Africans interested in working or studying inside the European Union.
3. Strict respect of the principle of non-refoulment, and development of binding minimum standards for all European countries for the treatment of demands for asylum and of irregular migrants in order to guarantee the full respect of the dignity of every human being.
4. Ratification of the United Nations Convention on the rights of migrant worker and of their families, approved by the assembly of the United Nations on the 18/12/1990 and in force since 2003, but not yet ratified by any member state of the European Union.
5. Substitution of the Dublin regulation, developing a real European policy of welcoming asylum seekers, as promised by the European institutions in the Stockholm Program.
6. Overcoming the equivalence between citizenship and nationality, which excludes millions of immigrants from their political rights, with the objective of establishing a European citizenship based on residency.
7. Relaunching a European policy of aid for development which would rationalise the investment of national resources and put in place a plan for North Africa promoting agricultural development, common management of water and alternative energies and the economic and political integration of the area, giving a unitary impulse to the relaunch of the economies of the Maghreb countries and supporting the democratic transition in course.
8. Creation of a direct instrument of finance for young people from the Maghreb to incentivise start-up businesses and cooperatives within the territory.
9. Finally, the calling of a Euro-Mediterranean convention, open to civil society, with the mandate to draft an agreement with the consensus of all parties.