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The effects of the Arab Spring on the European Union: Neighbourhood Policy and Solidarity between Member States in the light of Article 80 TFEU

di - 30 Maggio 2014
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However, it seems that this ratio was not followed because Article 80 TFEU has so far not been used as legal basis of any European measure concerning these issues.
Therefore, the mechanism for coordinated sharing responsibility between Member States is practically voluntary, even if there is a clear legal provision in the Treaty for the Functioning of European Union which, whenever necessary, obliges European countries to take actions to implement the principle of solidarity in determined areas as asylum, border checks and immigration.

In the end, we can draw three conclusions:
Firstly, the European Union, being aware of the historical events occurring in the Northern Africa and Arab region, decided to act promptly, by concretely supporting the movement towards full democracy, greater respect of human rights, rule of law, pluralism and social justice.
Secondly, the Arab Spring highlighted that, within the European Union, solidarity between Member States is currently more formal than substantial, especially in cases where one or more Member States are subjected to a strong pressure of migrants at their borders even if the Treaty of Lisbon clearly expressed the will to improve solidarity between Member States (in particular Article 80 TFEU).
Finally, it is evident that the question of external borders is not anymore a matter solely for certain Member States but a question of European common concern which needs further initiatives in the spirit of solidarity between European Member States in order to grant assistance and protection, both for the migrants and the people living in frontline countries.
The starting point could be the adoption of new appropriate European measures on the basis of Article 80 TFEU, jointly with Articles 77-79 TFEU, beginning to give application to one of the ideas considered by the Working Group regarding “the possible longer-term perspective of a common European border guard unit operating in conjunction with national border control services”. [15]
Last but not least, a final question mark: how should the external border of the European Union be considered nowadays and in the future? As the sum of several Member States borders or as a single European Union external border?


15.  See the Final Report already cited, p. 17. Concerning this aspect, it must be said that European Union has already some specific measures which should be improved in the light of the current events of migrations especially from African countries. Indeed, the “new” Frontex regulation (Regulation (EU) No 1168/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 amending Council Regulation (EC) No 2007/2004 establishing a European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union), that came into force in December 2011, specifies that Frontex will create European Border Guard Teams (EBGT) for deployment in Frontex joint operations and rapid border interventions. The EBGT will be composed of border guards from the EU Member States, experts in different areas of border management including land and sea border surveillance, dog handling, identification of false documents and second line activities such as establishing nationalities of irregular migrants detected at the border.

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