THE JOINT WAY FORWARD– OR THE EU:S WAY FORWARD IN AFGHANISTAN? A qualitative content analysis on an EU non-paper on enhancing cooperation on migration, mobility and readmission with Afghanistan
The cooperation with third countries on return is a political priority in the European Union (hereinafter the EU) and it has given rise to a number of partnerships. Afghanistan signed the agreement Joint Way Forward with the EU in October 2016, despite internal agreements within the Afghan government due to the difficult situation in the country. The aim of the thesis is to explore how the EU legitimizes policies that are considered controversial and non-normative. Focusing on the run-up to the negotiations, this thesis analyses to what extent the EU legitimizes the policy goals and the policy means in a normative manner and which policy type that dominates. The analytical framework based on the concept normative power is applied to identify normative and non-normative policy goals and means, together with an analytical tool to distinguish between different policy types. A qualitative content analysis is carried out on a joint European Commission and European External Action Service non- paper on enhancing cooperation on migration, mobility and readmission with Afghanistan. The analysis reveals that the EU applies both normative and non-normative policy goals and means in the legitimization of the agreement on return and the two policy types that dominate are status quo and imperial policies. The conclusion is however that the EU applies imperial policies when legitimizing the JWF as the overall objective is to reduce and to control Afghan migrants from coming to the EU, policies that only serve EU’s interests not Afghanistan, neighboring countries or the international institutions.
Normative Power European, EU:s readmission agreements, return, third countries