What was still a hypothetical scenario few months ago has now become reality: the Dutch citizens rejected the approval of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement (AA) with a majority of 61 % and with a turnout of 32.28 %. As a result, the referendum is considered “valid” under the Dutch Advisory Referendum Act (DAR) and it is now for the Dutch government to decide “as soon as possible” upon the actual implications of this result. Before analyzing the potential legal options, some preliminary remarks are in place.
The debate over the contents and the effects of the so-called Dublin System (currently enshrined in the Regulation Dublin III and in the Regulation Eurodac II) gained momentum in the last years, due to the effects of the dramatic events taking place close to the EU’s borders. Especially in 2015, the EU supranational institutions (see the Commission’s Agenda on Migration, at 15, and the European Parliament’s Resolution of 29 April 2015, among others) and the Member States meeting in the European Council (see the Conclusions of 15 October 2015, para. 3) could not avoid to admit that the time for seriously reconsidering some aspects of this system had finally come.
In particular, the points felt to be worth of discussion are: i) the definition of the criteria of allocation of the competence to receive and treat an asylum claim; ii) the effects that they produce on front line States and other States; and iii) the overall question of the fairness of the system in the view of an equitable burden sharing among Member States, according to Article 80 TFEU. On these and other controversial issues, the intergovernmental level proved much more emphatic than resolute and witnessed some dramatic confrontations (see for instance Di Bartolomeo; Carrera & Gros; Labayle & de Bruycker; Maiani; Pastore; Roman; Zorzi Giustiniani).
A recent document issued by the Commission offers the possibility to put forward some remarks about the ability of this supranational institution to give a real contribution to a complicated debate, where much of the credibility of the EU as a governance actor is at stake.
Increasing attention is being drawn on the ‘Cypriot case’, which has been causing considerable turbulence on the financial markets and raising remarkable political and legal concerns. The attitude taken by the European and international Institutions while dealing with the Cypriot crisis might seem somewhat fuzzy and confused if compared with