News Item

World Refugee Day: Council of Europe and EU Agency for Fundamental Rights to work closely together on protecting rights at borders

On World Refugee Day on 20 June, the Council of Europe and the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) are joining forces to strengthen their cooperation on human rights protection at the European borders.

As a follow-up to the previous joint Note ‘Fundamental rights of refugees, asylum applicants and migrants at the European borders’, the Council of Europe and FRA are preparing another joint publication on ‘European standards on legal remedies, complaints mechanisms and effective investigations at borders’.

The new Note will set out the human rights standards, stemming from both the European Convention on Human Rights and EU law. The publication will focus on effective remedies for human rights violations at the European borders. It will also provide detailed information on complaints mechanisms and the duty to carry out investigations into alleged violations at borders.

“Everyone within the jurisdiction of the Council of Europe’s 47 member states enjoys the protection of the European Convention on Human Rights. States must ensure that effective remedies are available and lead to effective investigations into allegations of violations of rights at the borders. We hope that this tool will allow member states to access a comprehensive overview of the existing European standards for the human rights protection of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers at the critical moment of border crossing and regarding the application of border procedures," said the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Migration and Refugees, Ambassador Drahoslav Štefánek.

“Everyone has the right to an effective remedy and to a fair trial. The joint note will provide more information on the Council of Europe and EU law applicable at the borders, so countries can ensure that people can access justice in case their rights have been violated,” added FRA Director Michael O’Flaherty.

The joint note will be available shortly.