The European Union wants to use aid to kill people. Seriously.

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Here we go. Deep breaths. From the Guardian:

When international donors and the Afghan government convene in Brussels next week, the EU secretly plans to threaten Afghanistan with a reduction in aid if the war-torn country does not accept at least 80,000 deported asylum seekers.

According to a leaked restricted memo (pdf), the EU will make some of its aid “migration sensitive”, even while acknowledging that security in Afghanistan is worsening.

Let’s be absolutely clear here: deporting people from Europe to Afghanistan harms them. The evidence of the enormous individual benefits of migration is – at this point – pretty irrefutable. At the very least, sending people to a poor conflict ridden country condemns them to a lower lifetime income, fewer opportunities, worse health outcomes and shorter lives (the average life expectancy – unweighted – in Europe is 78, in Afghanistan it is 60). Even worse, deported people face persecution and violent deaths. If we send 80,000 people back to Afghanistan, some of them will die unnecessarily and many more will  suffer.

I understand that countries have to deport people sometimes. But when these nasty, cynical policies are tied to development aid, those aid policies are forever tainted. It is another worrying sign that EU aid is being used to harm and endanger the very people it should be helping.

When I saw Alfonso CuarĂłn’s adaptation of PD James’s “Children of Men” six years ago, I worried it might some day come true. I worry more now. Shame on these people. Shame on all of them.

2 thoughts on “The European Union wants to use aid to kill people. Seriously.

  1. ronni

    October 18, 2016 at 5:17am

    can you actually deport people whom have been granted refugee status?

  2. Emma

    October 18, 2016 at 10:21am

    In Kabul on October 11th 14 people were shot dead on the street. 1.2 million People in Afghanistan have had to leave their homes. Many are sleeping on the streets. With winter coming they will perish in the cold. Yet the EU continue to push for Afghanistan to take back asylum seekers in return for aid. I was horrified to hear this included women and children.

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