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From Okinawa 2000 to Genoa 2001

Issue Performance Assessment
Illegal Migration

Overall Grade: F

Despite the fact that on July 19th, 15,000 people peacefully took to the streets in Genoa to protest the treatment of both Italy's and the world's illegal migrants, the issue of illegal migration has not appeared on the agenda either in Rome at the Foreign Minister's meeting, nor in Genoa at the leader's Summit.

While the G8 member states are treating illegal migration as a matter of purely domestic concern, three of the G8 members are currently revising their domestic immigration policy to reflect a more open architechture. Such is the case in Germany, where a bipartisan committee recommended that the government break with its longstanding closed border policy and open its door to qualified foreigners workers. In a similar move, both the United States and Canada are in the process of revising their immigration systems in order to increase the number of migrants entering their respective borders.

In spite of the similar nature of these initiatives, there is no plan among the members of the G8 to develop a concerted action strategy to co-ordinate immigration strategies and policies. The only statement that can even remotely be considered to apply to this very serious issue is a caveat sentence that appears near the end of the communique which states that the members of the G8 condemn "human trafficking". This condemnation does nothing to advance either a dialogue or a solution for dealing with illegal migration. Therefore, the G8 receive a failing grade as they did nothing to advance this issue.

Prepared by: Melanie Martin of the G8 Research Group.

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