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Ukip claims second election triumph, piles pressure on Cameron

21.11.14 @ 09:26

Ukip continued its insurgency into mainstream British politics on Thursday night (20 November), claiming its second by-election victory in as many months. Ukip candidate Mark Reckless took the Rochester and Strood ...

AnalysisDefeat is most likely result of UK immigration arms race

20.11.14 @ 18:35

Most election campaigns in Britain used to boil down to which party convinces voters it can best handle the economy. That is how Margaret Thatcher's Conservatives in the 1980s and then Tony Blair's Labour party in the ...

Supra-national border guard system on EU radar

19.11.14 @ 18:41

The European Commission is looking into long-term plans to create an entirely new EU border guard service with an independent command and control centre. While details are scant, a EU source said setting up such a supra ...

UK's Labour party takes up anti-EU migrant stance

19.11.14 @ 09:29

The UK's main opposition Labour Party on Tuesday (18 November) announced plans to crack down on EU migrants amid a heated debate on in the issue across the political spectrum. Labour wants EU nationals in Britain to be ...

Chances of Brexit almost '50-50' former PM John Major warns

14.11.14 @ 10:21

The UK and the EU are "close to a breach that's not in our interests or theirs", former British prime minister John Major told allies of German chancellor Angela Merkel in a speech on Thursday (13 November). Speaking at ...

OpinionThe immigrant democratic deficit and the rising far-right

12.11.14 @ 09:02

What EU citizens will probably remember most about May’s European elections is the success of far-right parties. Actions countering the far-right are mostly limited to election periods. The rest of the time, ...

UK makes €25 billion profit from EU migrants

05.11.14 @ 09:28

EU migrants paid €25 billion more in tax to the UK treasury than they received in welfare benefits, according to new research. The €25 billion was accumulated between 2001 and 2011 the paper, published in the Economic ...

Merkel: UK exit better than restricting free movement

03.11.14 @ 09:29

German chancellor Angela Merkel would reportedly prefer the UK to leave the EU than have Downing Street limit the free movement of people. Unnamed sources in the German government told the German weekly Der Spiegel that ...

EU citizens overestimate immigrant numbers, survey shows

30.10.14 @ 09:28

EU citizens tend to overestimate the number of immigrants and the unemployment rate in their country, a survey has shown. Ipsos Mori asked 11,527 people from 14 countries via the internet to estimate nine features of ...

OpinionCameron's tight-rope walk on free movement

22.10.14 @ 18:35

EU migration will be the key battle in the UK election next year. That’s obvious. Polls show that immigration is the number one issue for British voters; they care about it more than the economy - and after years of ...

Greece fined for violating asylum seekers' rights

21.10.14 @ 18:08

Asylum seekers in Italy and Greece are a step closer of having their rights vindicated following a verdict on Tuesday (21 October) at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). While the judgment is not final, the ...

Police launch EU-wide crackdown on migrants

14.10.14 @ 09:22

A two-week massive EU-wide border control and police crackdown on irregular migrants was launched on Monday (13 October) by the Italian EU presidency. Thousands of police officers from the 26 countries in the EU’s ...

Europe at risk of 'huge number' of returning jihadist fighters

10.10.14 @ 09:02

The EU is planning to step up border checks and passport controls to counter the threat of returning jihadist fighters. “We may be faced soon with returns, huge returns from Syria and Iraq,” the EU’s counter-terrorism ...

Frontex mission to extend just beyond Italian waters

07.10.14 @ 18:46

Triton, the EU-led surveillance mission in the Mediterranean Sea, will operate up to 30 nautical miles from the Italian coastline and cost €2.9 million per month. The EU-border agency Frontex is asking member states to ...

OpinionISIS and the rise of Islamism: the bell also tolls for Europe

22.09.14 @ 09:54

The current situation in Syria and Iraq is, beside other things, a result of reluctance of the European countries to get involved in the region. To the citizens of Muslim countries, this comes across as inactive ...

FeatureRefugee rights highlighted ahead of Swedish vote

10.09.14 @ 09:24

"Thank you for daring. Thank you for keeping grip of me when the barbed wire cut into your skin. Thank you for carrying me on your back although you don’t know how to swim. Thank you for singing to me when I was scared. ...

International waters likely off limits to EU migrant mission

09.09.14 @ 18:24

Plans to restrict the EU border agency Frontex operations to an area close to the Italian coast could jeopardise lives should Italy’s Mare Nostrum be phased out. “If this happens, Italy must maintain the Mare Nostrum ...

EU migrant mission will not replace Mare Nostrum

03.09.14 @ 18:30

The EU border agency Frontex's expanded role in the Mediterranean will be limited when compared to Italy’s own naval search and rescue operation, Mare Nostrum. EU home affairs commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom told euro- ...

EU mission to help Italy save boat migrants

28.08.14 @ 09:30

The EU is to launch a “Frontex plus” mission in autumn to help Italy on the search and rescue of Mediterranean boat migrants. Home affairs commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom announced the move after a meeting in Brussels on ...

EU to 'scrutinise' Cameron's migrant benefits plan

30.07.14 @ 09:15

The British government announced on Tuesday (29 July) it will tighten benefits for unemployed migrants from the EU in plans the European Commission has said it will examine closely. Under the proposals, London is to ...

OpinionStopping the wave of asylum seekers means fixing Libya

29.07.14 @ 16:10

Picture Maracana, Rio de Janeiro’s flagship stadium, which paid host to this year’s World Cup final. One of the largest stadiums in the world, it has a capacity of almost 79,000. Now picture the same stadium filled ...

EU grapples with smugglers as people fleeing conflict face torture

23.07.14 @ 09:28

In a large concrete house somewhere near the Egyptian coastal city of Arish, 25-year old Daniel Eyosab had given up on life. Eyosab, along with a dozen other people, was tortured on daily basis for nearly three months ...

OpinionCan we expect a rise in migration from Eastern Europe?

14.07.14 @ 18:16

Research indicates that the inflow of migrants from Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova - even after visa liberalisation - will be modest. The Polish Centre for Eastern Studies, altogether with seven other research ...

Italy: struggling to make itself heard on migration

07.07.14 @ 09:23

In the hills just outside Rome, tucked away from the road and about 50km from the coast, is the headquarters from where Italy struggles to deal with one of Europe's most pressing social crises - migrants making the ...

Van Rompuy sets out minimalist EU vision

01.07.14 @ 18:27

Europe needs to shift its focus from open borders to "protection", while avoiding interference in areas where national governments can better act alone, EU Council chief Herman Van Rompuy has said. Speaking on Tuesday ( ...

More EU aid possible amid Italian threat to stop migrant rescues

17.06.14 @ 09:25

The European Commission is open to requests for further financial assistance to member states under migratory pressure from people fleeing conflicts in Africa and the Middle East. “In 2014, the EC is ready to consider ...

OpinionSome solutions for the EU social benefits debate

10.06.14 @ 09:27

The free movement of workers was a major theme for several EU member states going to the polls in May's European Parliament elections. In countries like Denmark, France and the UK, the wish to curb migrant workers' ...

UK calls for welfare restrictions after EU election result

04.06.14 @ 09:29

Britain's minister for work and pensions, Iain Duncan Smith, visited his German counterpart on Tuesday (3 June), making the case for an overhaul of EU rules on freedom of movement in response to the anti-EU and anti- ...

OpinionItalian MEP candidates scaremongering on immigration

15.05.14 @ 09:08

The politics of fear are taking the stage in the upcoming European elections in Italy. Scaremongering is being used by representatives of both the majority and the opposition, by leaders of the European People's Party ...

EU border surveillance system not helping to save lives

14.05.14 @ 18:50

Launched in December to help prevent boat migrants from drowning, the EU’s border surveillance system, Eurosur, has yet to deliver amid a sharp increase in the number of sea-crossing attempts. “Unfortunately for the ...

Italian right calls for end to migrant rescue programme

23.04.14 @ 09:29

Italian right-wing politicians have called for the country's programme to rescue North African refugees from the Mediterranean sea to be scrapped after figures suggested that 1,100 immigrants had been rescued in the ...

Migration routes change, migrants' security does not

01.04.14 @ 09:32

It could have been just another attempted leap. But on 6 February, Desirée, a young Cameroonian, managed to cross the border and enter in Spain. According to what she told Spanish news outlet El Confidencial, it was her ...

InvestigationThe Migrants' Files: surveying migrants' deaths at Europe's door

31.03.14 @ 09:27

A tide of humanity — people on the run from Africa, the Middle East and Asia — is washing over Europe’s boundaries, and many don’t survive the journey. The plight of migrants only grabs the media spotlight ...

EU suspends Swiss talks on research and education

17.02.14 @ 09:54

EU-Swiss talks on EU-funded research and education programmes have been suspended following Bern's refusal to sign a reciprocal work permit deal with Croatia. “There was another round of negotiations due and we had said ...

EU wants investigation into Spanish border guard shootings

14.02.14 @ 18:08

The European Commission wants answers after Spanish border guards fired rubber bullets at migrants swimming to safety off the coast of the Ceuta, a Spanish-enclave in north Africa. At least 12 people are said to have ...

Post EU ElectionsEUobserver launches election series ahead of EU vote

11.02.14 @ 12:07

In recent years, a slew of parties has moved from the fringe to occupy central political debate across the EU - they are eurosceptic and hard-right and they are making mainstream politicians nervous. With the May EU ...

EU warns Switzerland after anti-migrant vote

10.02.14 @ 09:26

Swiss voters on Sunday (9 February) backed a call to cap migration from EU countries - a move which could trigger the exclusion of the wealthy Alpine country from the EU internal market. The vote passed by a razor-thin ...

Non-EU seasonal workers to get equal rights

06.02.14 @ 09:43

Foreign seasonal workers in the EU will have the same employment and social rights as their EU counterparts, under new rules adopted by the European Parliament on Wednesday (5 February). MEPs in Strasbourg signed off on ...

MEPs pressure Belgium on Afghan asylum seekers in Brussels

23.01.14 @ 18:43

Two MEPs are seeking parliament-wide support to pressure the Belgian government not to expel Afghans living rough in a Brussels-city-centre church. The head of the parliament’s leftist GUE group, Gabi Zimmer, along with ...

UK to benefit from Bulgarian and Romanian migrants, study says

15.01.14 @ 16:03

A Swedish economist has said Bulgarians and Romanians who work in other EU states are likely to contribute more to the economy than they take out in benefits. A study published last week by Joakim Ruist, a research ...

Trapped inside Europe: Undocumented migrants unable to leave

14.01.14 @ 20:51

An unknown number of migrants in the EU are caught in a legal limbo, denied basic rights in some member states and unable to return to their home countries. Some attempt to go home but are apprehended at the borders and ...

EU spells out rules on migrant access to benefits

13.01.14 @ 17:49

The European Commission on Monday (13 January) outlined ways national authorities can prevent EU migrants from abusing state benefits while preserving the right to free movement. “The guide published by the commission ...

UK vows to control immigration as Bulgaria, Romania curbs end

02.01.14 @ 09:29

The UK has vowed to control immigration, as restrictions on the free movement of workers from Bulgaria and Romania are lifted throughout the whole of the EU. “We’ve already capped welfare and cut immigration and this ...

EUobservedSaving migrants with cameras

31.12.13 @ 08:39

For a brief while in October it seemed the EU might be shocked into doing something about the recurring immigration horror on its southern coastline. Over 350 people drowned when a boat from Africa capsized near the ...

OpinionSmarter policies needed to end migrant deaths

17.12.13 @ 09:24

For several years I have been saying that migration can be summed up by a series of D words: demographics, disasters, demand, disparities and dreams. This year I am adding a new D: desperation. The world watched in ...

Mooted UK migrant cap would be 'illegal'

16.12.13 @ 18:22

The European Commission has said reported UK plans to cap the number of EU migrants entering the country to 75,000 annually would be illegal. “Any such restrictions would be illegal under the current rules,” European ...

EU countries offered €6,000 per head to take in refugees

04.12.13 @ 19:37

The European Commission is proposing to pay EU countries €6,000 for each UN-registered refugee which they agree to resettle. The idea, announced by the European Commission on Wednesday (4 December), is part of a package ...

EUobservedBeloved Ashton

29.11.13 @ 09:27

It looked like it would be another humdrum year for Catherine Ashton. Full of: Where is she? What is she doing? Why does she never talk to press? Then she pulled the Kosovo-Serbia deal out of the hat. It passed under ...

UK asked to avoid 'hysterical' debate on migration

27.11.13 @ 18:43

EU commissioners on Wednesday told the UK to avoid "hysteria" and to be more factual after Prime Minister David Cameron unveiled proposals to tighten migrants' access to social welfare payments. "I would really applaud ...

Border agency accused of failing migrants' rights

26.11.13 @ 17:58

In her debut appearance at the European Parliament, EU ombudsman Emily O’Reilly criticised the EU border agency Frontex for skirting its responsibilities on fundamental rights. O’Reilly told euro-deputies in the ...