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Edited by Satvinder Singh Juss

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Sergio Carrera, Juan Santos Vara and Tineke Strik

In this introduction to the book, the editors explain the relevance of analysing the constitutional aspects of the external dimension of EU migration and asylum policies. They argue that the labelling of the large arrival of refugees in 2015 as a crisis has severely affected the principles of the rule of law and the interinstitutional balance, which were just established with the Lisbon Treaty in 2009. The authors substantiate that the contributions in the book move beyond the state of the art in the literature by connecting the internal and external dimensions of EU migration and asylum policy and by analysing old and new patterns of external cooperation on migration. Through that lens, they identify a tendency of informalisation of the external cooperation, leading to ‘de-constitutionalisation’ of the EU decision-making in this field. This process raises questions on the EU’s legitimacy of the external cooperation on migration, which are dealt with in the book. The third part of the introductory chapter summarises the contributions in the book.

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Edited by Israel Doron and Nena Georgantzi

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Edited by Israel Doron and Nena Georgantzi

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Israel (Issi) Doron and Nena Georgantzi

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Edited by Mary Crock and Lenni B. Benson

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Savitri Taylor

The principal domestic mechanism through which Australia gives effect to its protection obligations under the UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, and under other human rights treaties, is the protection visa. This chapter describes the procedural treatment of asylum-seeking children in Australia and considers whether it is compliant with Australia’s obligations under key provisions of the Convention on the Rights of the Child. This chapter adds to the existing literature by examining the treatment of all asylum-seeking children and by focusing on legislative and policy changes in 2014 and 2015 affecting procedural rights at the primary and merits review stage of the protection visa application process.

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Mary Crock and Lenni B. Benson

In this introductory chapter we identify themes that will be carried throughout the book. We begin in section 2 with a discussion of the human rights challenges presented by children on the move, posing questions that our contributors will address as they build on the themes we identify. This is followed by an examination of obstacles that have been created to recognizing child migrants as rights bearers. After setting out in section 4 a brief outline of the book’s structure, the chapter concludes with some comments on global initiatives that have been made to address the challenges associated with mass migration, on the one hand, and of forced movement of refugees, on the other. We will argue that the uncertainty and risks facing the world in the new millennium certainly constitute problems – but they also offer opportunities for positive change. Four foundational principles inform our discussion of how states should respond to children on the move. The first is that childhood is unique in that the status of being a child is transitory and (absent disabilities) the capacities of children evolve as children age. Second, it follows that children require special protection and assistance, most particularly in their younger and adolescent years, if they are to develop and thrive. The third point is that procedural accommodations should be made for children in recognition of the physical and cognitive stages of their development. The fourth and final principle both flows from and unites the three that precede it. It is that the treatment of child migrants matters because it has long-term consequences – both for the children themselves and for their host communities.

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Kathryn E. van Doore

Children are increasingly on the move in, through and out of South East Asia for independent voluntary migration, or due to forced migration, or trafficking. This chapter examines how the best interests principle embodied in the Convention on the Rights of the Child intersects with the issue of child migration and trafficking in the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) region. It asserts that South East Asia is in a unique position to adopt a child rights-based approach to child trafficking and migration policy regionally with the best interests of the child as the paramount consideration.

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Timnah Baker and Kate Bones

International and domestic jurisprudence and guidance on the definition of ‘refugee’ have largely developed around the adult applicant. Decision-makers and courts have often struggled to engage with the different experiences and vulnerabilities of children seeking asylum. This chapter examines the application of the refugee definition to children in the law of Australia and the United States, providing comparative case studies on two aspects of the definition that present particular issues in the jurisdictions: the level of harm required to amount to persecution, and ‘membership of a particular social group’. The chapter concludes by drawing on the two case studies to highlight the possibilities of transnational and cross-jurisdictional dialogue in the field of refugee law.