One month after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the European Union (EU) already faces its largest refugee crisis since World War Two, with more than ten million people having fled their homes – 6.5 million displaced within Ukraine and 3.9 million escaping to neighbouring countries.
Acting quickly and decisively, European governments have opened borders and European citizens have opened their homes in an unprecedented showing of solidarity towards refugees. But, with all eyes on Ukraine, the Greek coastguard continues to illegally push back asylum-seekers crossing from Turkey while Spanish police forcefully repel those who dare to jump the fence in Melilla.
The painful contrast exposes the double standards in the EU’s approach to refugees.… Seguir leyendo »
Following the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan, European leaders shared messages to welcome those evacuated, but the reality of European responses to displacement in Afghanistan paints a more contentious picture.
As of July 2021, 33,325 cases of Afghan asylum applicants were pending in Germany, in France 18,410 people were waiting on a decision, while in Greece the numbers were 13,660.
Arguably, such numbers are manageable given European states’ size and their functioning asylum systems but, while 56 per cent of Afghans in Europe receive protection status, a large proportion is still in limbo in differing European countries’ asylum systems.
Europe hosts fewer than ten per cent of the three million UN-registered displaced Afghans globally, as neighbouring countries carry the burden of Afghanistan’s forced displacement: Iran hosts almost one million Afghan refugees and Pakistan 1.5 million, and these numbers double when adding undocumented or Afghan passport holders.… Seguir leyendo »
During the last few weeks, the European Union (EU) has been widely criticized for its 'failed' vaccination strategy. But with all the focus on the general slowness of the EU in vaccinating the populations of its member states, another aspect of the EU's public health crisis has been ignored.
Undocumented persons are being left out of COVID-19 national vaccination programmes and Brussels remains alarmingly silent about it. This should come as no surprise as migration is a toxic issue and governments in EU countries are now under immense pressure to vaccinate their own citizens as soon as possible.
But the race towards herd immunity cannot afford the luxury of another EU standstill.… Seguir leyendo »