Over Land and Sea: NGOs/CSOs and EU Border Externalisation

This paper looks at the Central Mediterranean Route, and assesses the relationship between migration-related NGOs/CSOs and EU border externalisation in this liminal, transnational, mobile spatial configuration. In so doing, it introduces the notion of anti-externalisation, with its variants counter-externalisation and counter-delocalisation, identifying relevant practices among NGOs/CSOs. The paper further explores connections between anti-externalisation activities on land and at sea, and analyses how the different spaces, places and contexts along the Central Mediterranean Route impact on the relationship between externalisation and NGOs/CSOs. The terrestrial and maritime environments, with their political and legal specificities, provide opportunities for and obstacles to both externalisation and anti-externalisation policies and practices. NGOs/CSOs can accept or oppose the relevant constraints, and exploit the place-specific opportunities. While some of these actors support externalisation, others oppose it through forms of counterexternalisation (resorting to the same spatial specificities of which externalisation policies take advantage) or counter-delocalisation (transnational, transborder and de-territorialised practices similar to those used by externalisation actors). The paper also underscores the itinerant character of NGOs/CSOs’ anti-externalisation action, which, like governmental control, adopts the route perspective and follows migrants’ trajectories over land and sea (also resorting to the air dimension to increase monitoring capacities) in order to support their right to mobility.

Full titleOver Land and Sea: NGOs/CSOs and EU Border Externalisation Along the Central Mediterranean Route
AuthorPaolo Cuttitta
PublisherGeopolitics, DOI: 10.1080/14650045.2022.2124158
Media typeArticle
Topics NGO, European Externalization Policies & Cash Flows
Regions Mediterranean Sea, North Africa

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