"An unfortunate voyage to Libya” headlines the Dagens Nyheter editorial, which looks back on European Commissioner for Home Affairs Cecilia Malmström’s visit to Libya in October 2010. At the time, there were rumours of camps for illegal migrants in the Libyan desert and the EU naturally felt obliged to seek information about the situation, remarks the Swedish daily. However, “the agreement signed by the commissioner went too far, because it offered Libya €50 million over the next three years to implement ‘reforms’ on issues such as asylum, migration and border controls.” In practice it amounted to employing Gaddafi as an EU border guard, notes the Stockholm daily, which continues: “The scenario was already well worn: all North African dictators who have recently been ousted had promised the EU ‘reforms’ and greater efforts to promote ‘Human rights.’ In exchange for money and trade contracts, they were ready to sign anything.”
“It is easy to be clever with the benefit of hindsight,” remarks the daily, “but the agreement with Gaddafi was already scandalous when it was signed. Today Cecilia Malmström will have to provide full information about the consequences of this meeting. Was there a dialogue? Where did the money go?” In conclusion, Dagens Nyheter affirms that the entire EU should ask itself the question of how it came to sign a treaty with Gaddafi.