Migration Diplomacy as a Foreign Policy Instrument
(Migračná diplomacia ako nástroj zahraničnej politiky)
Politické vedy, Volume 25, Number 2/2022, pages 130-150
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LIĎÁK, J. - ŠTEFANČÍK, R. 2022. Migration Diplomacy as a Foreign Policy Instrument. In Politické Vedy. Vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 130-150. ISSN 1335 – 2741. Available at: https://doi.org/10.24040/politickevedy.2022.25.2.130-150
Research on international migration in the field of political science and international relations has been relatively new. Research on the political aspects of migration in Slovakia has been even more recent. In our study, we focus on the relationship between international migration and international relations. The study aims to explain how some governments use the regulation of migration processes in their territory to advocate their domestic and foreign policy goals. We use the concept of migration diplomacy to explain the policies of national governments in relation to the European Union. Using the examples of three states – Libya, Turkey and Belarus – we seek to clarify how two basic categories of migration diplomacy operate: the cooperative and coercive ones. The study concludes that all three states used migration diplomacy as a tool of their foreign policy, although not always with the same success. Powerfully weaker states can be successful in using this strategy because, by regulating migration processes, they achieve influence over the decisions of the ruling elite of stronger states. Since political success in competitive democracies is determined by the mood of the electorate, democratic governments may be more willing to accept the demands of non-democratic countries that are able and, under certain conditions, willing to regulate migration processes on their territory or to stop them altogether. However, the case of Belarus shows that the pressure of one state on another through migration may not be successful if migration does not reach a mass character and if the state can ensure the successful protection of its borders.
Key words: migration, migration diplomacy, coercive, international relations, foreign policy