Home / Our Analyses / While illegal border crossings into the EU are down from record 2015 highs, the United Nations seeks a global pact on migration

While illegal border crossings into the EU are down from record 2015 highs, the United Nations seeks a global pact on migration

By PATRICK STEPHENSON, BRUSSELS – Frontex, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, reported this month that its detections of illegal border crossings into the European Union dropped 60 percent in 2017 compared with 2016, to some 204,300 persons. By contract, in 2015 over 1.8 million persons crossed illegally, with nearly 90 percent coming either by sea through the Eastern Mediterranean or over land through the Western Balkans. The 2017 figure is still high by historical standards. Between 2009 and 2014, according to Frontex, illegal border crossings averaged nearly…

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Tough political talks lie ahead between European Parliament and Council over rules and financing of EU’s future defence fund

By BROOKS TIGNER, BRUSSELS – The European Commission’s June 2017 proposal to create a European Defence Fund splits into two parts: a defence research “window” and one for capability development known as the European Defence Industrial Development Programme, or EDIDP. The latter would enable the EU to co-finance with national governments the pre-acquisition costs of testing, prototyping and demonstration for developing defence and dual-use capabilities. While few policymakers contest the research window’s rules and proposed budget of EUR 500 million per year starting in 2021, there are growing concerns within the European Parliament about the fairness of the EDIDP’s tentative structure and, moreover, how to fund its preliminary two-year budget of 500 million euros for 2019-2020. At issue are...