A family walking on a railroad track with few luggages
  The Majids and other refugees followed a railroad track as they walked toward the Hungarian border on August 30. Photo: Mauricio Lima for the NYT.

Dilemmatic Adjudication: Europe’s Refugee Crisis and the Question of Migrant Rights

by Moritz Baumgärtel
22 March, 2016

While recently making major headlines, the arrival of substantive numbers of asylum seekers to Europe has been a pressing political issue for a longer time. This presentation will discuss the role of law in this context as being torn between, on the one hand, increasingly restrictive migration policies and, on the other hand, difficult individual situations of many migrants which raises legal questions about the protection of fundamental rights. Looking at the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the EU, the argument will be made that this tension is permanent rather than temporary and that adjudication has thus turned indelibly “dilemmatic”. In other words, the European courts uphold rights guarantees only partially, temporarily or limited to specific contexts, thereby enabling governments and national judiciaries to limit the impact of its rulings. To illustrate the point, this presentation will draw several examples from case law dealing with the scope of international protection, the EU’s Dublin regulation and family reunification.

Where: Room 316, New Chancellor Day Hall
McGill Faculty of Law
When: March 22nd (1:00-2:30 pm)

Event organised in collaboration with the Immigration portfolio of the McGill Human Rights Working Group.

About the speaker:
Portrait of Moritz BaumgärtelMoritz Baumgärtel is a PhD candidate at the Perelman Centre for Legal Philosophy of the Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB) and currently a visiting scholar at Duke Law School. His research project focuses on the impact of case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the EU on the precarious human rights situation of migrants and asylum seekers, using an ‘issue-based’ interdiscipli-nary approach to analyzing the effectiveness of the court. He holds an M.Phil. in In-ternational Relations from the University of Cambridge and an LL.M. (cum laude) in Public International Law from Utrecht University and has previously worked as an instructor at University College Roosevelt in Middelburg, the Netherlands. Moritz has been a visiting researcher at iCourts, University of Copenhagen, and is also affil-iated with the legal section of the Institute of European Studies of the ULB. His project is funded by the Belgian inter-university research network ‘The Global Challenge of Human Rights Integration: Towards a Users’ Perspective’ (HRI).

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