The attempts of responsibility-transfer of asylum-processing and refugee-protection by the UK and Denmark to Rwanda, reflect a fundamental shift from the conventional principle of territorial asylum and set an undesirable precedent. Deporting the vulnerable to countries with perpetual internal socio-political and economic issues and inadequate asylum infrastructure, will gravely compromise their safety, welfare, human rights and benefit claims as refugees.
Assistant Professor, FLAME University, Pune
Dr Divya Balan is Assistant Professor of International Studies at FLAME University, Pune, India. She has her doctorate in European Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi. Her teaching and research interests include European studies, international and internal migration, migration governance, Gulf migration, Indian diaspora, and refugees in India. Divya has received several scholarships and grants and also a member of several academic organisations. She has also served as a visiting fellow of the Institute for European Global Studies at the University of Basel, Switzerland. She has authored several topical opinion and research papers for national and regional newspapers, monographs, edited books and research journals. She is an active public speaker on themes related to migration, diaspora and refugees.
The unprecedented consensus within the EU in accepting Ukrainian refugees presents it as a global humanitarian power. But is this truly a ‘paradigm shift’ or is it a continuation of the West European Cold War strategy, based on a moral high ground narrative, of accepting people who had fled the ‘evil and undemocratic’ Soviet-bloc countries during and after World War II?
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is in India, seeking a trade deal, and promising immigrant visas. The UK wants more Rishi Sunaks but the simmering issue is about irregular migrants from India, low-skilled labour whose numbers are still disputed by both countries. While a free trade agreement may still be signed, it will likely not address this problem, leaving thousands of Indians undocumented in the UK.