European Council President Donald Tusk has called EU leaders together for an extraordinary summit today to discuss a joint response to the crisis migrant flow from North Africa and to the unprecedented death toll as a result of increased human trafficking activity in the Mediterranean. "The objective of the summit is to discuss what member states and the EU institutions together can and must do to alleviate the situation now," he added. One of the topics to be discussed is targeted intervention against human traffickers in Libya.

  • A New Strategic Approach
In light of recent developments of the ongoing migration crisis with thousands of deaths in the Mediterranean  alone, Anna Triandafyllidou, Global Governance Professor at the European University Institute in Florence, outlines four key elements that a new strategic European approach should consist of, in her article "Irregular migration in the Mediterranean: four key principles for solving the crisis": strengthening the EU’s search and rescue capabilities; enlisting the support of neighbouring countries; tackling the smuggling networks active in the region; reforming the system that assigns responsibility for asylum seekers between EU states.

Triandafyllidou argues that the current pressures on central and eastern Mediterranean routes to Europe - stemming from both asylum seekers and irregular migrants - will not cease any time soon. The European Union cannot manage this situation based on its 1990s toolkit (notably the Dublin Regulation) and the emphasis it places on returning failed asylum seekers and apprehended irregular migrants. Professor Triandafyllidou insists on improving the system of asylum quotas in ways in which it will encourage the sharing of responsibility between “frontier” states like Italy, Malta, Greece, and northern European countries.