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"The ties that bind" : an analysis of the establishment of a European immigration policy Feesey, Julia Anne

Abstract

European member states have historically refused to admit that they are nations of migration. Current socio-economic factors are forcing them to re-evaluate that viewpoint. The decision to amend immigration policy to aptly reflect the multicultural reality of the modern European state is supported by the European Union institutions. The Union of European states began with the 1957 Treaty of Rome and has expanded to include fifteen nations representing over 370 million citizens. Since the launch of the Treaty of Rome immigration issues have remained open for discussion, and while they have never entered the realm of core issues they have be attended to at each Summit and Intergovernmental Conference from the aforementioned Treaty of Rome to the 2001 Conference on Migration. At the 1997 Amsterdam Conference the European Union, with the support of its member states, called for the establishment of a common European immigration policy by 2004. Thus, national policies must be combined with each other to create legislation that protects the national sovereignty of member governments while appropriately addressing the needs of EU citizens and third country nationals. In this work I argue that the European Union will successfully launch its common immigration policy, with member support, by 2004. I draw this conclusion via an analysis of EU immigration legislation and a country-based analysis, which addresses the needs and expectations of three Union members: Britain, Germany and Finland, with regard to immigration policy and involvement in Union legislation. It is my conclusion that the institutional and legal foundation has been established upon which to establish Europe's common immigration policy.

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