With the enlargement of the European Union (EU), Poland and Slovakia have become crucial border areas at the eastern edge of EU. This has important implications for the EU’s immigration policy. Both countries have been traditionally known as countries of emigration. In recent times, however, they have increasingly become transit and target countries for immigrants and asylum seekers. The EU has exerted pressure on both countries to tighten their borders in order to fight illegal immigration; they have also been urged to restrict their entry conditions and increasingly consolidate their asylum systems. This article shows that in adopting new immigration and asylum policies these countries have mainly responded to EU interests and less to interests linked to domestic issues.

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