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Commission reinforces EU rules and launches a Global Alliance to Counter Migrant Smuggling


Today, the European Commission has adopted the new legislation to prevent and fight migrant smuggling. At the same time, the Commission is also hosting an International Conference in Brussels, launching a Global Alliance to Counter Migrant Smuggling. These initiatives will introduce a new legal, operational and international cooperation framework against migrant smuggling for the years to come.

Migrant smuggling is a criminal activity that disrespects human life and the dignity of people in the pursuit of financial or other material benefits.

A modern and strong legislative framework to fight smugglers

The legislative proposal adopted by the Commission today is comprised of two parts. A first proposal lays down minimum rules to prevent and counter the facilitation of unauthorised entry, transit, and stay in the EU, aiming to:

  • Effectively prosecute organised criminal networks responsible for migrant smuggling
  • Harmonise penalties, reflecting the seriousness of the offence;
  • Improve jurisdictional reach;
  • Reinforce Member States’ resources and capacities;
  • Improve data collection and reporting.

In addition, a Regulation to reinforce Europol’s role in the fight against migrant smuggling and trafficking in human beings, will establish the European Centre Against Migrant Smuggling. The role of this truly European Center will be to:

  • Strengthen coordination at EU level: the European Centre Against Migrant Smuggling;
  • Ensure inter-agency cooperation;
  • Improve information sharing;
  • Reinforce Member States’ resources to combat migrant smuggling;
  • Increase support for Europol through staff deployments to counter migrant smuggling.

A Global Alliance to Counter Migrant Smuggling

The Call to Action for a Global Alliance launched today is crucial for coming together on prevention, response and alternatives to irregular migration, including addressing the root causes of irregular migration and facilitating legal pathways.

The work on this Call to Action will be taken forward in a framework set up by the Commission, working closely and acting as a contact point for all global stakeholders. The Commission will convene technical Expert Groups with representatives from EU institutions, agencies, Member States, partner countries, international organisations and other stakeholders.

For more information

Commission launches a Global Alliance to Counter Migrant Smuggling and proposes a strengthened EU legal framework


Proposal for a Directive on preventing and countering the facilitation of unauthorised entry, transit and stay in the Union

Proposal for a Regulation on enhancing police cooperation in relation to the prevention, detection and investigation of migrant smuggling and trafficking in human beings

Conference page

Factsheet on migrant smuggling

Call to action

Migrant smuggling



Link:, dated November 28, 2023 3:17 pm

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