• Samuil Pavlevchev

Fortress Europe? Current migration trends and European responses

Philosophy Club recommends this lecture.

Tuesday, 25 February 2020, 19:00 - 21:00

Diplomatic Academy, Festsaal

Favoritenstraße 15a, 1040 Vienna

Refugees are today living under catastrophic conditions in Bosnian and Greek camps. Migrants are dying in prisons in Libya and Egypt, in the Mediterranean Sea, and in the Sahara Desert. East Africa and the Horn of Africa together host 4.2 million refugees and 9 million internally displaced persons (IDPs). Basic services such as food, shelter, healthcare, and education will face further cuts in 2020 if no additional funding is made available. Due to decisive EU interventions, including the EU-Turkey Statement, cooperation with the Libyan Coast Guard, and the EU’s imposition of anti-migration laws for some African countries, irregular arrivals in the EU have decreased drastically since 2015. Furthermore, to prevent irregular migration, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency FRONTEX will be strengthened with up to 10.000 guards. According to the Austrian government program, anyone who tries to “illegally” cross any EU border should be brought back – in compliance with international law – to their country of origin, the previous country of transit, or another safe third country. At the same time, the so-called Austrian “Hilfe vor Ort” approach remains a general statement without the necessary resources. A fair, orderly, and regular migration management system – such as the one agreed upon in the UN Global Compact on Migration – is only possible with an equitable dialogue between the countries of origin, transit, and destination as well as a proper understanding of regional migration dynamics and the complex causes and patterns of migration. This includes the increasingly common trend of circular migration, whereby migrants move repeatedly between two or more countries. This discussion will seek to answer the following questions: What are the current migration trends in the surrounding regions that might affect Europe? What is the human price that migrants and refugees have to pay for a “Europe that protects”? Why do refugees face such dangerous and inhumane conditions in Bosnian and Greek camps? To what extent do EU countries support the millions of refugees in East Africa?

For more information see: http://www.vidc.org/en/topics/africa/fortress-europe/

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