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Migration Policy of the Czech Republic, Legal and Illegal Migration in the Czech Republic and in the European Union, Visa and Readmission Policy, Analytical Centre for Protection of State Borders and Migration 

Approach to Illegal Migration in the Czech Republic and the European Union

Not only unauthorised entry into the territory of a state or unauthorised departure from the territory of a state but also unauthorised stay in the territory or a stay in conflict with the purpose for which residence permit was issued needs to be regarded as illegal migration.
Illegal migration is a phenomenon that can fundamentally jeopardise the internal stability and security situation in the destination countries. For this reason, the measures concerning combat against illegal migration are one of the major issues addressed in the migration policy of the Czech Republic.
The basic document concerning the combat against illegal migration is the Action Plan of Combat against Illegal Migration (hereinafter referred to as the Action Plan), which was prepared in 2003 and was approved by the Resolution of the Government of the Czech Republic No. 108 of 4 February 2004. The action plan is based on the principle 3 of the Czech Government’s Migration Policy Principles, and is related to the tasks defined in the National Action Plan of Combat against Terrorism. The main goal of the Action Plan is to find and implement such solutions and measures that can minimise illegal migration and motivate foreign nationals to legally enter and stay in the territory of the Czech Republic.
The Action Plan of Combat against Illegal Migration is a strategic document a part of which is a time schedule for implementation of measures. This time schedule is updated every year. Measures defined for the combat against illegal migration in the Action Plan were originally divided into the following five basic areas: prevention, control and penalties, legislation, inter-ministerial cooperation and international cooperation. The measures proposed in legislation were implemented in 2005; as a result, they were not included in the updated time schedule. In addition to the Ministry of the Interior, also the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Industry and Trade and the Ministry of Finance also participate in the implementation of the measures defined in the updated time schedule of the Action Plan.
It follows from the above that international migration is not an issue that could be addressed within a single ministerial sector. The matters of foreign nationals concern all areas of everyday life and therefore this is a typical cross-sectoral issue, which needs to be addressed at an inter-sectoral level. Therefore at the stage of actual implementation or at least at the stage of preparation, the individual projects and programmes, created within the individual ministerial sectors, are always discussed with the central bodies responsible for the areas concerned.
In particular, the illegal international migration associated with illegal employment is a significant issue widely discussed throughout the society. The government of the Czech Republic has been addressing this issue on a long-term basis and as early as on 23 October 2003, in the Resolution No. 1044, it approved a Time Schedule of Measures following from the Updated Strategy of Combat against Organised Crime, which established the Inter-ministerial Body for Combat against Illegal Employment of Foreign Nationals in the Czech Republic(IBCIE). The Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs is the guarantor for the activities of this body, the mission of which is to ensure mutual exchange of information, to propose and ensure the use of coordinated procedures with the aim of improving the efficiency of the combat against illegal international migration. 
At the level of the European Union, the issues of illegal migration are addressed particularly in the Migration-Removal Working Group of the EU Council (the part concerning admission and expulsion) and, in some cases, even in the Border Working Group of the EU Council.
Within the Migration-Expulsion Working Group, the directive concerning the procedural rules for making a decision on the return of third country nationals and the related areas (for example, detention) and directive on penalising employers of third country nationals with illegal stay were discussed recently. The final version of the latter directive is now being discussed with the European Parliament and it can be one of the texts that will be discussed during the Czech presidency of the EU.

  1. The Directive of the European Parliament and the Council on common standards and procedures in Member states for returning illegally staying third-country nationals, the purpose of which is to harmonise the practices of member states in the event of removal or a return, that is, to implement clear and transparent common rules for return, removal, application of means of coercion, temporary detention and prohibition on entry, while fully respecting the human rights of the persons concerned. The final text of this Directive has already been approved by the European Parliament and it should be published in the Official Journal very soon.
  2. Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and the Council providing for sanctions against employers of illegally staying third country nationals, the purpose of which is the effort to suppress one of the “pull factors” of illegal migration, which is employment of third country nationals illegally staying in the country. The aim of the discussed Directive is to harmonise the common practices and measures against the employers of third country nationals staying illegally in the territories of member states (which means they do not meet the conditions for staying in the territory of the member state) at the Community level and to implement these measures effectively.

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