Human rights of immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers
are alarming trends in the treatment of asylum seekers and refugees, as
well as of irregular migrants in all parts of Europe.
States are engaging ever more intensely in extensive border patrols,
trying to deter the entry of migrants into their territory. Migrants,
including asylum seekers,
who do manage to enter irregularly Council of Europe member states are often criminalised,
locked up in prison-like conditions, and expelled as quickly as possible
– even to countries where they risk persecution and torture. However,
irregular migration is not a criminal act and irregular migrants also enjoy certain rights under
international law, which need to be respected.
In an attempt to fight abusive asylum requests, states undermine the
rights of genuine asylum seekers, who are frequently detained and unable
to access fair and efficient asylum procedures.
The Commissioner works with and advises member states to improve the
protection of human rights of migrants and to ensure that
undocumented migrants and their children have the right to basic health care and
promotes their right to protection against arbitrary detention,
as well as their right not to be sent to countries where they
risk ill-treatment and torture.
He draws attention to the fact that one of the most vulnerable
groups in Europe today is migrant children, who often are denied
basic health care and education, and run the risk of being
exploited by traffickers or smugglers.
The Commissioner has also intervened as a
third party before the European Court of Human Rights in
cases concerning the return of asylum seekers to Greece under
the Dublin Regulation, which has lead to the groundbreaking
judgment in the
M.S.S v. Belgium and Greece case.
The protection of migrant rights in Europe
(Paris, 5 October 2012)
Report of the round-table
with human rights defenders, organised by the Office of
the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights
Seminar on human rights dimensions of migration in Europe
(Istanbul, 17-18 February 2011)
Organised by the Office of the Commissioner for Human
Rights and the Turkish Chairmanship of the Council of
Europe Committee of Ministers.
Press release published on 15.02.2011
Recent Migration of Roma in Europe
are the root causes of Roma migration in today’s Europe?
What are the human rights of Roma when they move from
one country to another? What should receiving countries
do to ensure that the human rights of Roma migrants are
fully respected? This study "Recent Migration of Roma in Europe"
published by Commissioner Hammarberg and the
OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, Knut
Vollebaek, aims to shed light on these topical questions.
Human rights of Roma migrants in Europe