Emanuela Pistoia

Strenghtening the Return Policy Through a More Extensive Use of Detention

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In the struggle to make the return policy more effective, the proposed Return Directive Recast sets out an extensive use of detention against irregular migrants in the process of being deported. The essay investigates whether the proposed changes to the current rules are compliant with Article 6 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, which corresponds to Article 5 f) ECHR, against the background of the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights and the EU Court of Justice. Given that non-compliance emerges in a few instances, the essay goes on exploring whether the extensive restrictions to the right to liberty laid down in the proposed provisions could help improve the success rate of the return policy of EU Member States.


  • Irregular Migration
  • Returns
  • Detention
  • Right to Liberty in the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights
  • Right to Liberty in the ECHR


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