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Managing a Multiplicity of Interests

The Case of Irregular Migration from Libya

Melissa Phillips

Introduction Irregular migration and the false perception that it constitutes a “threat,” mainly to citizens in the global North, continues to be a matter of public attention and governmental policy interest in many corners of the globe ( Andersson

Open access

Perilous Navigation

Knowledge Making with and without Digital Practices during Irregularized Migration to Öresund

Nina Grønlykke Mollerup

This article explores navigation when knowing is intrinsically difficult. It looks at how irregularized migrants know during their perilous trips to and through Europe, focusing particularly on the significance of digital practices on these journeys. Based on retrospective ethnographic fieldwork conducted with Syrian refugees in and around the Danish-Swedish borderland, the article seeks to engage with digital migration studies, arguing that an understanding of irregularized migrants’ navigation, whether with or without digital practices, must involve the emplacement and embodiment of knowledge. Second, the article brings experiences of instability and danger into the anthropological theorization of knowing in order to explore the shifting positions and capabilities of knowing bodies.

Open access


Reconceptualizing Transit States in an Era of Outsourcing, Offshoring, and Obfuscation

Antje Missbach and Melissa Phillips

Public interest in irregular migration is at an all-time high in many parts of the world. Consequently, governments, policy makers, and international organizations are under considerable pressure to reduce the momentum of irregular migration and

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The Morally Fraught <em>Harga</em>

Migration Blame Games in a Tunisian Border Town

Valentina Zagaria

The Tunisian coastal town of Zarzis is known for its generations of male emigrants to France and for initiating post-revolutionary harga – the ‘burning’ of the border via undocumented sea crossings to ‘Europe’. Despite migration being central to life in Zarzis, the harga is fraught with anxieties and moral accusations. While older generations accuse younger ones of chasing after easy money and causing jealousies, thereby fuelling the harga, young men reckon that risking the crossing is a matter of escaping social death. Men of all ages also agree that the harga is often women’s fault. This article explores how the desire of making a living in Europe is evaluated in a departure town, and what the accusations and negative emotions it conjures up might reveal about people’s understandings of their economic and moral lives in times of political and social change.

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Extraterritorial migration control in Malaysia

Militarized, externalized, and regionalized

Choo Chin Low

English abstract: This article examines how migration control in Malaysia has been transformed in response to non-traditional security threats. Since the 2010s, the state has expanded the territorial reach of its immigration enforcement through trilateral border patrol initiatives and multilateral defense establishments. Malaysia’s extraterritorial policy is mostly implemented through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) frameworks. Common geopolitical security concerns, particularly the transnational crime and terrorism confronted by Malaysia and its bordering countries, have led to extraterritorial control measures to secure its external borders. Key elements include the growing involvement of the army, the institutionalization of border externalization, and the strengthening of the ASEAN’s regional immigration cooperation. By analyzing the ASEAN’s intergovernmental collaboration, this article demonstrates that Malaysia’s extraterritorial migration practices are militarized, externalized, and regionalized.

Spanish abstract: Este artículo examina la transformación del control migratorio en Malasia en respuesta a las amenazas de seguridad no tradicionales. Desde 2010, el estado aumentó el alcance territorial de su control migratorio a través de patrullas fronterizas trilaterales y establecimiento de defensa multilateral. La política extraterritorial de Malasia tiene como marco principal la Asociación de Naciones del Sureste Asiático (ASEAN en inglés). Las preocupaciones de seguridad geopolítica comunes, particularmente los delitos y el terrorismo transnacional, provocaron medidas de control extraterritorial para asegurar sus fronteras externas. Los elementos clave son la creciente implicación del ejército, la institucionalización de la externalización de fronteras y el fortalecimiento de la cooperación regional en inmigración de ASEAN. Este artículo demuestra que las prácticas migratorias extraterritoriales de Malasia están militarizadas, externalizadas y regionalizadas.

French abstract: L’article analyse les changements apportés aux services de con trôle de la migration en Malaisie. Depuis 2010, l’État a étendu son champ d’action et mis en place des initiatives de patrouilles frontalières trilatérales, de défense multilatérale et une police extraterritoriale déployée sous l’impulsion de l’Association des nations de l’Asie du Sud-Est (ANASE). Les problèmes de sécurité géopolitique, comme la criminalité transnationale et le terrorisme qui sévissent en Malaisie et dans les pays voisins, ont donné lieu à des mesures extraterritoriales pour sécuriser les frontières extérieures. Parmi elles, figurent l’implication de l’armée, l’externalisation institutionnalisée du contrôle aux frontières et le renforcement de la coopération de l’ANASE en matière d’immigration. Par l’analyse de cette coopération intergouvernementale, cet article démontre que la politique migratoire malaisienne est régie par la militarisation, l’externalisation et la régionalisation.

Open access

When Transit States Pursue Their Own Agenda

Malaysian and Indonesian Responses to Australia's Migration and Border Policies

Antje Missbach and Gerhard Hoffstaedter

expectations of the respective governments in Indonesia and Malaysia, which favored mutually beneficial cooperation on irregular migration. More importantly, we spell out how Australia's externalized border and asylum policies created a number of detrimental

Open access

Transit Migration in Niger

Stemming the Flows of Migrants, but at What Cost?

Sébastien Moretti

of the country, on their way to North Africa and, for some, onward to Europe. Given its key position between West Africa and Libya, Niger has been considered by the EU as a priority country in its fight against irregular migration. Before 2015

Open access

From Ecuador to Elsewhere

The (Re)Configuration of a Transit Country

Soledad Álvarez Velasco

the rate of irregularized migration in Ecuador. The constitution's promise of “free mobility” and “universal citizenship” has attracted immigrants and asylum seekers from nearby countries, such as Cubans, Haitians, and Dominicans, and others from far

Free access

Nonrecording the “European refugee crisis” in Greece

Navigating through irregular bureaucracy

Katerina Rozakou

one police officer named “irregular” bureaucracies: nonrecording practices and modes of dealing with irregular migration in improvised ways. In a setting of “cultural intimacy” ( Herzfeld 1997 ), police officers confided in me as a fellow Greek what

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Steve Kwok-Leung Chan

middle to later part of migration processes. The topic of citizenship rights as a cause for irregular migration and falling victim to trafficking in the sending country is seldom addressed in the literature. This article is mainly based on archival