Humanitarian visa campaign led by Queen Mary academic is approved by the European Parliament
Dr Violeta Moreno-Lax, Senior Lecturer in Law at Queen Mary University of London has successfully campaigned to the European Parliament to adopt a Humanitarian Visa Resolution. According to Dr Moreno-Lax, humanitarian visas have the potential to contribute to a solution to the refugee crisis.
Dr Moreno-Lax successfully petitioned to the European Parliament to establish a European Humanitarian Visa, supported by more than 160 academics specialising in European migration and asylum policy.
A historical development
The Resolution, approved by a plenary vote on 11 December 2018, represents an important accomplishment since negotiations began in 2014. It puts on pressure on the European Commission to table a legislative proposal for humanitarian visas by end of March 2019.
The motion, submitted by MEP Juan Fernando López Aguilar, is based on a report which included a legal evaluation from Dr Moreno-Lax. The development holds the potential of bringing EU migration and border control policies clearly in line with a human rights-based framework.
Dr Moreno-Lax, said: "The approval of European Humanitarian Visas motion constitutes a historical achievement. It represents concrete delivery on the pledges made in the European Agenda on Migration as well as prior documents regarding legal pathways to the EU Member States for those in need of asylum.
"Humanitarian visas are a prime mechanism of safe and legal access to international protection, with the potential to decisively contribute to a practical, humane, and dignified solution to the refugee crisis."
Dr Moreno-Lax is the Founder of the Immigration Law programme and inaugural Co-Director of the Centre for European and International Legal Affairs (CEILA) at Queen Mary University of London.
Earlier this year seventeen survivors of a fatal incident involving a boat found in distress off the coast of Libya filed an application against Italy with the European Court of Human Rights. Dr Moreno-Lax is the lead counsel on the case.
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