IEP Lunch Debate with Dr. Emily Haber, Federal Ministry of the Interior


On 8 February at 12.30 p.m., we welcomed Dr. Emily Haber, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of the Interior as a speaker at the IEP Lunch Debate on the topic “European Migration Policy from a German Perspective”. The debate was opened by Bernhard Schnittger, Deputy Head of the European Commission’s Representation in Germany. The event was moderated by Prof. Dr. Mathias Jopp, Director of the Institute for European Politics (IEP).

In her speech, Dr. Emily Haber referred to the Bratislava Declaration and Roadmap in which the return to Schengen, the guarantee of internal security and the establishment of a European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) at the EU’s external borders were defined as main objectives. She put emphasis on the necessity of a European migration architecture that can be applied by all member states. Thus, she introduced a three-pillar structure, consisting of open internal borders, effective control of external borders and a reformed Dublin system. Regarding the maintenance of the Schengen area, Haber expressed her support of open internal borders, although the importance of internal border controls for some time in order to prevent smuggling and trafficking of human beings was emphasized. At the same time, she pointed out that the protection of refugees is not negotiable, even though systematic identity checks within the ETIAS should be ensured. Moreover, for the reform of the Dublin system a stronger focus on an integrated solidarity mechanism was proposed. All in all, she underlined the high chance of reforming the European migration architecture, since the combination of a decreasing influx of refugees and a fragile system would lead to a willingness to cooperate among the member states. Eventually, minimizing illegal immigration and strengthening forms of legal migration should be aimed for.