For a Europe of Openness and Solidarity

First call for mobilisation for a counter-summit and an alternative forum on 'Migrations and development'

19.May.08 - France has made the issue of migration one of the priorities of the French presidency of the European Union in the second half of 2008.

On the 13th and 14th of October 2008 the European Union's council of ministers will be meeting in Paris in order to adopt a 'European pact on immigration and asylum'.

On the 20th and 21st of October the second Euro-African inter-ministerial conference will be held in Paris on the question of migrations and development ('Rabat II').

France intends to propose to its European counterparts the agreements entitled 'coordinated management of migration flows and co-development' as a negotiating model under which, on the one hand, France promotes selective immigration and, on the other hand, it requires the countries of the South to readmit their nationals and those of third countries who have transited through their territory.

Concerned by the essentially security-orientated nature of the treatment of migration flows, by the treatment accorded to migrants, and by the economic choices adopted which maintain the African continent on the margins of development, we have decided to organise a European mobilisation in order to make the voices of French, European and African civil society heard.

It is high time that the issue of migrations and development are genuinely re-thought in the light of mutual interests: those of the countries of origin, of the transit countries, of the receiving countries, and, above all, those of the migrants themselves.

Europe is being transformed into a closed fortress and is adopting extreme measures to prevent access to its territory and to expel the undocumented. We wish to react so as to stop Europe from falling back into the dark days of segregation between nationals and undesirables through the sytematisation of camps and forced expulsion.

We call for participation in a very large-scale European mobilisation during the week of 13th to 19th October in Paris, to promote a different understanding of immigration and a different relationship between the European Union, Africa and the rest of the world. We will organise at that time a counter-summit on the questions of migration and development, a big European demonstration for a different European politics, and a giant concert.

The following organisations were present at the first preparatory meeting in the offices of CRID:

Cimade, ENDA Europe, GRDR, Altermondes, IPAM, CRID, Emmaüs International, CNCD, Terre des Hommes France, FAL, Observ-i-x, Peuples Solidaires, IDD, Gisti, UCIJ, SNUIPP, FSU, FSU – UCITT, MRAP, CIEMI / Migrations Société, CGT, RESF, Migreurop, ANAFE, Secours Catholique, Emmaüs Europe, CFDT, FASTI, ATTAC, Cedetim, Frères des Hommes