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EUROPEAN MIGRATION CRISIS

Many migrants from the Middle East and Africa has put tremendous pressure on EU countries, especially Italy, Greece and Hungary. More than 350,000 migrants were detected at the EU’s borders in January-August 2015, compared with 280,000 detections for the whole of 2014.The conflicts raging in Syria and Afghanistan, and abuses in Eritrea, are major drivers of the migration. More than 2,600 migrants have drowned in the Mediterranean this year, trying to reach Greece or Italy.

 

The 350,000 total detected so far this year at the EU’s borders includes more than 230,000 who arrived in Greece and nearly 115,000 in Italy. About 2,100 arrived in Spain. The largest migrant group by nationality in 2015 is Syrians, as people flee the country’s brutal civil war. Afghans and Eritreans come next. They are often also fleeing poverty and human rights abuses.

The majority of migrants take the Mediterranean Sea in decrepit boats or rubber dinghies. They land first in Greece, because of its many islands and proximity to launching points in nations such as Turkey and Libya. Italy and its island of Lampedusa are other major destinations, again primarily because of its location. Once there, many migrants try to relocate via the so-called Balkan land route, a journey that involves crossing multiple borders. Many head for Germany or Sweden, where asylum applications are more likely to be approved.

European leaders have planned a summit in Brussels on Sept. 14. Germany, Italy and France are calling for a more equitable distribution of refugees throughout the EU. As it stands, Germany takes about 40% while Britain and Spain take very few. Other nations have taken few steps to stem the tide. In a widely criticized move, Hungary has built a wall with its southern neighbor Serbia and vowed to deploy troops there.

This migrant crisis has created an immensely tensed condition in the European countries as well as in Middle East countries. World leader should come together and find a solution as soon as possible.

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