Domestic Law against European Union’s Migrant Crisis

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Unlike Treaties, Domestic Law is only enforceable within a state’s own territory, therefore the states are more apt to enforce their own laws over those negotiated through treaty. While there is no force in place to enforce International Law, making the wider world one great anarchy, states will certainly enforce their own laws within their own borders.

Some states within the European Union, especially those which are heavily affected by the flow of migrants, have been far less likely to adhere to the Union’s treaties on immigration and instead rely on their own internal laws to deal with the problem. One such country is Hungary. In the middle of 2018, Hungary’s parliament passed laws that would criminalize any organization or individual who tries to aid an illegal immigrant claim asylum. Hungary’s new legislation targeted non-governmental organizations and their ability to intervene on behalf of asylum seekers.

As if that wasn’t enough, Hungary’s Parliament went further and passed an amendment saying that so called “alien populations” cannot be settled within their borders. However, Hungary isn’t the only state within the European Union that stands in opposition to the treaties that its tried to enact. Back in 2015, Poland rebuffed a deal that was intended to shuffle over a hundred thousand migrants among European Union member states. This deal was intended to relieve some of the pressure placed on Italy and Greece, and other states were forced to take on the burden of providing those migrants shelter.

While this domestic legislation may be adequate for the immediate needs of each state, it leaves their neighbors in a difficult situation. Similar to the prisoner’s dilemma, with each state that only looks out for itself, more states will be looking to defect and do the same. With more states in the Union looking out for only their own best interests, its difficult to see a solution to the migrant crisis. Because treaties are largely unenforceable, domestic law is best utilized to understand the migrant situation by looking at the problem through the lens of domestic lawmakers.

While one could make the case for one side or the other, it seems as though domestic laws matter the most when trying to understand the European migrant crisis. Although treaties can be highly influential in state decision making, these states are by no means firmly bound by these agreements. While there may be a great deal of finger wagging and huffs and puffs if a state pulls out of an agreement, there isn’t any entity there to prevent them from reneging on treaties. Therefore, domestic law which seems to be much more influential in understanding the migrant crisis. Even states within the European Union who are compelled by their fellow member states to follow immigration quotas still do pursue their own interested where domestic policy is concerned.

States like Hungary and Poland flaunt their unwillingness to adhere to the treaties that they’ve previously signed. Instead these states make their own laws to deal with the crisis at hand. Overall, international refugee law appears to be unable or insufficient to effectively solve the refugee crisis. However, this can’t be made without reflecting on the insufficient will of states to jointly address this issue. As has been stated, there have been some attempts by groups of nations like the European Union to solve the problem, but they lack a clear and unified vision to resolve the problem that they face. This poses a serious problem for Europe. Relying on their own internal laws is inadequate to solve the problem for the region as a whole, but at the same time treaties are too weak and unenforceable for any unified action to be possible.

Cite this paper

Domestic Law against European Union’s Migrant Crisis. (2021, Jul 27). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/domestic-law-against-european-unions-migrant-crisis/

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