Human rights courts, including the ECtHR, often defer to statist border control prerogatives. My central contention is that moving immigration and asylum policy into EU law has transformative potential. That potential is rooted in the EU’s distinctive constitutional and institutional constellation. At the constitutional level, the aim of the creation of an Area of Freedom, Security and Justice has transformative potential. The institutional dimension includes shared competences, minimum standards legislation, and the institutionalization of mutual recognition across the EU. These features of the EU suggest an approach to migrant and refugee rights that transcends the statist paradigm. Whether that promise is met is explored in the body of this book. In engaging with immigration and asylum policy, the EU is engaged in a crucial element of self-definition: the ‘Destination Europe’ of the title refers not only to migrants’ destination but also the political form of the EU.
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