The Khartoum Process: A sustainable response to human smuggling and trafficking?

The Khartoum Process is likely to exacerbate the root causes of irregular migration instead of quelling them.

In the 2012-16 ‘migration crisis’, citizens from the Horn of Africa have been arriving irregularly in Europe in unprecedented numbers, whilst featuring disproportionately amongst the fatalities. This has prompted the launch of the Khartoum Process, a partnership between the 28 member states of the European Union (EU) and East and North African states, to respond to human smuggling and trafficking. This brief critically and unfavourably evaluates this framework. The Khartoum Process is not only unlikely to achieve the desired outcomes, but, more importantly, it is likely to pose a risk to the better governance and development of the Horn of Africa.

About the author:

Tuesday Reitano is deputy director of the Global Initiative against Transnational Organized Crime and a senior research consultant for the ISS. She has experience as a policy specialist for the UN. She serves as an independent expert to the EU on human smuggling, is lead author of a 2016 OECD study on the smuggling of migrants from Africa to Europe, and co-author of Migrant, refugee, smuggler, saviour, a book that documents the human-smuggling industry behind Europe’s migration crisis.

Picture: ©IOM/Muse Homammed

Other publications in the ISS Migration series:

At the edge: trends and routes of North African clandestine migrants

The Niger-Libya corridor: smugglers' perspectives

Breathing space: the impact of the EU-Turkey deal on irregular migration

Development partners
This brief was made possible with support from the Hanns Seidel Foundation. The Institute for Security Studies is grateful for support from the other members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the governments of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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