This week’s downing of a Russian jet by Turkey near the Syrian border will complicate even more the mess surrounding Syria. Putin has called Turkey an “accomplice of terrorists”, and has denounced that the oil extracted by the Islamic State (ISIS), which is vital for its finances, is sold through Turkey.
At the entrance to European Union (EU) territory, asylum seekers are bound for different countries. Most of them want to continue their journey to Germany and Sweden, although they are technically allowed to ask for asylum in the first EU country they enter. So far, less than 50 persons have asked for asylum in Slovenia.
The focus on terrorism is obscuring the issues of refugees, and it is important to consider its impact on Europe, after the shock of Paris. Of course, the impact of terrorism in the daily life of ordinary citizens is going to increase the culture of checks and control in place since September 11, 2001. Since the New York massacre, the 10,000 planes that take off daily carry citizens who go through vexing security check, and cannot bring liquid on boards, etc.
Geography and history, modern and older, internal fault lines as well as external interventions, have given rise to a perfect storm in the Eastern Mediterranean. In an arc of fire that stretches from Libya to Syria and can be extrapolated further North, all the way to Russia and Ukraine, a series of conflicts have made this an area of particular instability, for the world as a whole and more immediately for nearby Europe…
By Deniz Torcu
When I was working for a UNESCO Commission in Turkey a couple of years ago, we had started receiving dozens of phone calls from the Southern Turkish border with Syria, from refugees desperately trying to get in touch with some authority that could help them get settled in a camp or help them get to the EU
Europe and Germany cannot be an island of contentment, because cross-border crises do not simply disappear by building walls, looking away and failing to act.
The refugee crisis has revealed rifts among EU member states trying to cope with the influx of asylum seekers who hope to make their way to the wealthier parts of Europe. EU leaders are acting in very different ways: some, albeit very few, are taking the humanitarian high ground, while others are either cherry-picking which refugees are permitted to enter their countries or closing their borders altogether.
By António Guterres
The European Union is preparing key emergency meetings to take decisions in its response to the present refugee and migration crisis. The situation requires a massive common effort that is not possible with the current fragmented approach….
Europe is facing a moment of truth. This is the time to reaffirm the values upon which it was built.
On Wednesday, 13 May, the European Commission unveiled its highly anticipated plan to deal with the increasing number of migrants trying to reach the European shores. The long-awaited European Agenda on Migration made waves in the media with its system of immigration quotas and proposal for military action in the Mediterranean. The “immediate action” called for by the Commission establishes a set of measures to deter and dismantle traffickers’ networks, while also distributing the burden of resettling asylum seekers amongst EU member states. More details will continue to be presented on the various proposals, while the package will be discussed by the EU leaders at the upcoming European Council meeting in June