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Our maxim: “understanding before action”
Our purpose is to encourage the knowledge and the debate of issues connected with art and military science. Selection of articles attempts to reflect different opinions. Beyond any ideological ascription. In order to impulse critical thought amongst our readers.

martes, 30 de septiembre de 2014

La UE necesita una política migratoria.

EU Must Develop Clear Strategy to Address Migration Surge.

By Maria Savel, Sept. 29, 2014, Trend Lines 

Earlier this month, a boat carrying upward of 250 migrants toward Europe sunk off the coast of Libya. A week prior, an estimated 500 migrants were killed when their vessel was sunk by human traffickers off the Maltese coast. These are just the latest events in a year that has proven to be exceptionally deadly for migrants seeking to enter Europe.

With over 3,000 people having drowned trying to enter Europe so far this year, there have been many calls for European nations and the European Union to do more to address the issues of migration and asylum.

The dramatic increase in the number of migrants attempting to come to Europe is the result of several factors. “There has been an increase in serious conflicts driving people out of their homes, most notably Syria, but also longstanding conflicts in Iraq, Sudan, etc. . . . The countries that host the overwhelming majority of refugees—Pakistan, Iran, Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon—are saturated, and the EU is receiving a tiny spillover,” explains Liza Schuster, a reader in sociology at City University London, in an email interview. “In addition there is massive unemployment and underemployment in many countries, and while most migrants seek work in neighboring countries, images of wealth and ease [broadcast] into homes around the globe attract people who wish to create a future for themselves and their families.”

Philippe Fargues, director of the Migration Policy Centre and the European University Institute, adds that “the points of control between the countries of origin and Europe have been weakened, particularly Libya. The collapse of the Libyan state means that no one is controlling the coastline, allowing for people to be smuggled. ”

Understandably, Italy, as the destination country of most migrants, has done the most to address the current situation. “Italy began a massive rescue operation in October of last year, Mare Nostrum, which has rescued over 120,000 people,” Fargues says. “Italy is working to have European support for this mission, but so far nothing has happened.”

However, Mare Nostrum has also had the unintended effect of attracting migrants, Fargues says. “Migrants are rescued and physically brought to Italy where they can then declare asylum.” No such rescue mission has ever existed before, and some argue it makes the trek seem less risky.

While Mare Nostrum “seeks to identify boats in distress, most efforts are directed at stopping people from embarking or pushing them back,” according to Schuster. “EU members should not indiscriminately return people before allowing each individual to claim asylum if that is what they want to do, but indiscriminate pushbacks have been happening for years. The obsession with border control leads to violence, sometimes fatal, against migrants by smugglers, by traffickers, by governments authorities and sometimes by other migrants.”

Fargues explains that “the EU needs to intervene much, much earlier in the journey of migrants to Europe, ideally in the first country that they reach once they have fled their home country. If European embassies in these countries could make it possible for people trying to find international protection to obtain a visa, it would solve part of the problem. These migrants would reach Europe, but in a regular and not irregular way,” he adds.

There is also a lack of cooperation between the EU and many of the transit states on the southern coast of the Mediterranean, particularly Libya. “There used to be coordination between Italy and Libya on these issues,” says Fargues, “but that ended with the old regime [in Libya]. And now there is no state with which to cooperate.”

The burden of dealing with asylum seekers is also not shared equally across the EU. “There is a common European asylum system,” Fargues says, “but the Dublin Regulation says you should make your asylum claim in the first country you reach in Europe.” Most migrants arrive by sea in Greece, Malta or Italy, making them responsible for the vast share of asylum claims in Europe. If rescue operations such as Mare Nostrum become European operations, he asks, “where will they disembark these people? Geography makes it difficult to disembark them in the U.K. or Germany instead of Greece, Malta and Italy.”

On a domestic level, the rise in far-right parties has made migration a bigger policy target. These parties “toughen the center and act as a brake on the more progressive elements within the EU,” Schuster explains. Moreover, in terms of government policy, “there was no golden age of generosity to refugees or migrants. Europe’s ‘long and honorable tradition’ is a complacent, smug myth used by self-serving politicians claiming liberal values.”

“There is a real history of [popular] solidarity with migrants and refugees,” Schuster adds, “but it is one of opposition to government policies, and it ebbs and flows. It is definitely time for a resurgence.”

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