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What is Frontex?
Frontex is the Border and Coast Guard Agency of the European Union, founded in 2005. Since then, its budget of EUR 6 million has increased by 7000%, and is expected to reach EUR 11 billion for the period 2021-2027. In terms of personnel, the Frontex task force is to be increased to its own standing army with 10,000 border and coast guard officers by 2027.
The main activities of Frontex are:
- Repatriation of “irregular migrants” (including direct or indirect involvement in illegal pushbac
- Planning and implementation of deportations throughout the EU
- Build-up of local border management agencies and equipping them with important know-how (especially in the area of surveillance via alignment with European standards and systems)
- Composition of so-called “risk analyses”, including action recommendations (such as strengthening border
- controls, expanding Frontex operations or increasing the agency’s resources)
To carry out these activities, Frontex is deployed not only directly at the EU’s external borders as well as within European countries, but also in more and more third countries due to the constantly increasing outsourcing of the EU migration regime. It is actively collaborating with more than 20 countries outside the EU. For instance, Frontex cooperates with the Libyan coast guard, which intercepts migrant boats and forcibly drags them back to Libya, where migrants are detained under massively violent conditions. It actively supports the expansion of air monitoring, while official rescue operations continue to be reduced. Frontex’ activities promote the racist narrative of migration as a threat, and the agency uses its own risk analyses as self-legitimation for even further expansion. Since 1993, EU’s policy of isolation has cost over 44,000 lives, not including the high number of unreported cases.