Discrimination Based Upon Race, Religion, and Ethnicity When Filing for Asylum in the European Union (Policy Paper)
Individuals within the European Union, regardless of immigration status, should be afforded the protections of both EU law and the European Convention on Human Rights. There is a large body of law in Europe that exists to protect individuals from racial and religious discrimination. However, the law has been applied unevenly, which has, subsequently, caused gaps in many crucial areas. As a result, migrants who are now seeking asylum face discrimination when they should be protected. Most applicants applying for asylum within the European Union are non-Caucasian and non-Christian. This paper will examine the current state of the law in Europe to evaluate the degree of protection from racial and religious discrimination asylum seekers can expect. First, this paper will examine the legal framework within the European Union. Next, this paper will examine the implementation of refugee law in three EU counties, recent developments in the region, and recent EU case law. Then, this paper will examine Council of Europe law, including treaty law and case law, since EU countries are also state parties to the European Convention on Human Rights. Finally, this paper will make policy recommendations to ensure that the EU is not discriminating against asylum seekers and that every state participates in aiding refugees.