Conditionality-clauses are a classical instrument aimed at changing the pure economic functioning of international trade law, to integrate in the economic texture non-trade values. In the in the EU context, a ‘symbiotic’ relation exists between the notions of ‘conditionality’ and human rights. However, in the context of the EU external migration policy, a new form of conditionality has emerged, which departs from its intrinsic connection with human rights. The EU migration policy was intended as a way to cooperate with Third Countries to reduce international migration to the EU. Behind seemingly contradictory forces pulling the EU Migration Policy between security concerns and human rights protection, the ‘fight against irregular immigration’ remains its core objective. This is especially clear when looking at the evolution in the use of EU financial instruments. This paper intends to critically analyse these policy developments, through the lens of conditionality.