Comparative Study of US and EU border policies and protocols

This article with keywords: Comparative-study-US-EU-border-policies-protocols in one sentence

This article, with the keywords: Comparative-study-US-EU-border-policies-protocols, describes and compare the border policies, protocols and infrastructures of both the United States (US) and European Union.


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NOTE: The article is continuous.  However, in order to make it easier to read, this post includes headings to guide readers.

Comparative Study of US and EU border policies and protocols; case study examples: activities of border patrol and detainment agencies


The United States of America (USA) and European Union (EU) have maintained a bilateral relation for over sixty years. The relation started in 1953 when US ambassador visited the European Coal and Steel Community convention. Although autonomous of each other, both the US and most of the member states of the EU are allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).  However, the autonomous nature of the US and EU permits each to have its own policies and protocols as is the case of border control. Consequently, while the border policies and protocols of the EU are guided by the Shengen Agreement; the US has a number of federal statues, executive actions and court decisions guiding its border policies and protocols. Nonetheless both being party to, are required to conform their border policies and protocols to the New Transatlantic Agenda agreement as well as the mobility rights of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). Despite their organizational fellowship and co-signatories, the US and EU have disagreed with each other on a wide range of specific issues. In what ways do the EU and the US agree and what are the differences and similarities in their border policies, protocols and infrastructures?

US vs. EU border policies and protocols


While the US and EU has similar international border policies, their internal border control protocols vary. Prior to the 2015 migration crisis, the EU in pursuant of the mobility right of the UDHR, fourth protocol of the European Convention on Human Rights allows free and lawful entry in and out of Europe and prohibits the collective expulsion of foreigners. Similarly, the Immigration and Naturalization Act of the US allows foreign nationals to lawfully enter, work and live permanently in the US. More so, both the EU and the US have similar visa policies to control entry and exit through their borders. In like manner, the US Refugee Act provided protection for refugees and asylum seekers same as the enabling statues of the Common European Asylum System.


On the other hand, while the Shengen Agreement and Svlbard Treaty allow free migration within the EU’s Shengen Area; the US maintain autonomous immigration policies in each of its major territories hence subsisting internal border check between such territories. For instance, while a European leaving one country to another within the Shengen area does not require custom checks between the borders of those countries; an American leaving the Northern Mariana Islands to Guam or American Samoa will have to undergo immigration and customs check at the border between these territories.

US vs. EU Border Patrol

The US Border Patrol (USBP) is the US armed federal law enforcement agencies charged with the responsibility of detecting and preventing illegal aliens, terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering the US as well as to prevent illegal trafficking of people and contraband. Similarly, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex), performs the task of border control of the EU Shengen Area, in collaboration with the border and coast guards of Shengen Area member states. However, although both agencies are mandated to work in alliance with the UN Convention and Protocol on the Status of Refugees; recent activities have suggested contravention. The Operation Streamline of the US DHS and DOJ has been criticized for purported violation of the rights of migrants and asylum seekers during prosecution of nearly 98,000 immigrants in 2013.  Also following the April 2018 announcement of the Trump administration of their zero tolerance policy, the prosecution of asylum seekers and migrants along the southwest border escalated. Over 3,000 children were taken from their parents who are subjected to this prosecution. In the same vein, Frontex was accused of violation of international and European asylum and human rights laws in 2009.

Conclusion to this article with keywords: Comparative-study-US-EU-border-policies-protocols

From the discus, it is obvious that there are many parallels between the border policies and protocols of the US and EU. There are also a few variations. But the central point is how these policies and protocols affect humanity. The greatest concern is for provision for the use of force in the border policies as well as the application of same in the protocols. Where use of force is allowed, possibility of the violation of rights cannot be ruled out. Hence, the legal debate for whether or not an action of the armed patrol agencies violates the rights of the refugees and asylum seekers will in no near time abate. Shall we exchange battle of words for actual pain of men? Do the US and the EU preach the aspirations of the UDHR and do the opposite? Undoubtedly, if the aspirations of UDHR must be met, as its actualization rests on these two major institutions, policymakers must take a deeper look at the statutes of criminalizing irregular entry and the possibility of their potential repeal.

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