Managing migration from the central Mediterranean: Europe’s considerations and challenges

What are the current trends in central Mediterranean migration? What are the alternative options tokeep the migration flows to Europe at manageable levels?


Giulia Falzoi, Head, Migration management unit, IOM

Elham Saudi, Director of Lawyers for Justice in Libya (LFJL)

Sherine El Taraboulsi-McCarthy, Research Fellow with the Humanitarian Policy Group at the Overseas Development Institute

Gerald Knaus, Chairman, European Stability Initiative and Open Society Fellow, ECFR Council Member.

Kirsty Mc Neill, Save the Children's Executive Director of Policy, Advocacy and Campaigns, ECFR Council Member

Chaired by

Mattia Toaldo, Senior Policy Fellow, ECFR

The recent migration deal reached between the European Union (EU) and Libya, and the uptick in arrivals from Libya in 2016 and in the first weeks of 2017, again shine the spotlight on the flow of migrants to Europe through the Central Mediterranean. The EU, after reducing migration flows from the Eastern Mediterranean through the March 2016 agreement with Turkey, aims to replicate this approach with Libya. However, the early 2017 agreement between Italy and Libya, which was endorsed by EU leaders during the Valletta summit on 3 February, raises concerns about safeguarding human rights as well as questions about the deal’s feasibility and implementation.

The workshop will address current trends in central Mediterranean migration and will examine alternative options to counter human trafficking, safeguard the rights of migrants, and keep migration flows to Europe at manageable levels. Mattia Toaldo and ECFR Council Members Gerald Knaus and Kirsty Mc Neill will further discuss how EU policy on the central Mediterranean route fits into the overall EU migration policy and current domestic debates. They will provide their personal reactions in light of the recent Dutch elections and the upcoming French elections.