EU/MEDITERRANEAN STATES: MEAGRE RESULTS ON HUMAN RIGHTS FROM BARCELONA PROCESS.

 
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The disappointing results of the Barcelona Process on the human rights front were criticised by delegates attending a hearing staged by the European Parliament's Human Rights Sub-committee in Brussels on July 11. According to Sandrine Grenier, coordinator of the Euromed human rights network, the EU is all talk and no action. She supported her argument by pointing out the lack of human rights projects in the MEDA 2005-2006 programme. Khaled Fouad Allam, a sociologist, highlighted the seeming inability of the Barcelona Process to create a "policy" area in the Mediterranean, which has grown in the last ten years both in terms of function and border perception, saying: "The administrative and technical language of the Euromed partnership has acted as a shield for governments' lack of political will". He added that the willingness to "open" the area was limited to economics and all other questions remained closed, particularly immigration.

The questions of immigration and democracy in the Arab countries were at the heart of the discussions. Italian Socialist MEP Pasqualina Napoletano spoke about a "cynical pact" between the governments on either side of the Mediterranean: EU leaders offered international respectability to the debatable regimes to the South, who, in exchange offered to prevent immigration by way of a repressive policy totally in violation of human rights. As an example, she citde the discussions between...

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