One of the international dimensions one often sees referred to in the context of asylum seeking and alleged illegal immigration is the European Union Dublin Regulation.
Or more accurately regulations as the original Dublin Convention of 1990 has been amended several times subsequently.
The purpose of the Regulation was outlined by Minister Simon Harris in response to a recent Dáil question from Rural Independent TD for Laois/Offaly Carol Nolan.
Deputy Nolan had requested that the Minister supply information on the “the number of asylum applications refused from 2016 to 2022 on the grounds that the applicant had already applied for protection in another country contrary to the Dublin Convention .”
The actual number was just 15.
This is a ludicrously tiny number given that the state’s own statistics, and indeed occasional references by Ministers over the years, indicate that the greater number of people who apply for asylum in Ireland not only come from what are considered to be “countries of safe origin,” but who have obviously travelled here via other EU states where they are legally obligated to apply for asylum.
Where the Dublin government stands in relation to the effective use and implementation of the powers of transfer under the Dublin Regulation is that of the 23,737 EU transfers (from a total of 142,494 requests) just two transfers were made from Ireland of persons who were not entitled to claim asylum here.
(The EU’s own statistics show that there were 25 transfers from Ireland but I am not certain what explains that disparity although there are references to “administrative differences in the timing and recording of requests.) Suffice to say, it remains a tiny number, even in comparison to the number of requests made. Just 1.4% in fact.
To make matters worse, as we have shown in other instances, there have been cases where people have been proven to have applied for asylum in other states but then travelled to this country and made another application.
Gript recently outlined the case of one such person Ellie Kisyombe who not only managed to flout all of the procedures supposedly in place to tackle bogus applications but was feted by the Irish establishment as some kind of heroine.
There are other examples, some of who are also prominent in the recent public lambasting of Irish people for not just shutting up and accepting illegal immigration as something that is supposedly good for them.
Although the discourse in some quarters has become notably more aggressive and not so much pitched as something that might be good for us.
It is patently clear then that the Dublin Regulation is somewhat ironically named given the minimal efforts on the part of the Irish state to enforce it here.
It is worthwhile perhaps to look at the origin and content of the Dublin Convention and Regulation to understand exactly how remiss they have been in that regard.
The current version is Dublin III, EU Regulation 604/2013 which was made part of Irish domestic legislation through a number of Statutory Instruments. The purpose of 604/2013 was – following on a European Council decision at Tampere in October 1999 – to establish “a clear and workable method for determining the member state responsible for the examination of an asylum application.”
The basic principle, as outlined by Minister Harris, is that a person seeking asylum ought to make an application and have that application processed in the first member state that allows them to enter.
The consequent right of a member state to transfer a person who has clearly flouted those criteria back to the member state from which they have travelled to make an application in another state was upheld by the European Court of Justice in July 2017.
The fact that the Regulation was challenged and that it has been undermined even from within some of the EU’s own institutions by those on the liberal left intent on pursuing an “open borders” policy has, however, made the whole system pretty much impotent at this stage.
One of the valid criticisms of the Regulation is that it potentially penalises those member states who are at the frontline of illegal entry and who therefore have no recourse to transferring such persons anywhere else and who are also then the primary recipients of bogus applicants transferred back from other member states. This has been cited by Hungary and other states as a reason to properly enforce controls at the point of entry and to process and refuse to take what they consider to be bogus applicants at the borders.
The mounting mess that is illegal immigration continues to cause havoc and one of the fruits of that has been Commission decisions to force member states to take persons claiming asylum on a proportional basis as part of some putative “solidarity” exercise.
That renders the Dublin Regulation pretty much meaningless if the letter of the legislation can be over-ridden by a political decision by the EU Commission or ignored because of the pressure placed on member states by the liberal left and a vast and hugely funded and powerful NGO sector.
A situation that is made even worse in a country such as Ireland where the state has clearly bought into the ideology of the proponents of mass immigration with little or no controls – whether these be international corporations or the political Left – or simply lacks the intellectual, legal and moral authority to protect its own borders and citizens.