With the largest migration of refugees since World War II, it’s no secret that Europe has faced a constant battle between offering protection and balancing their capacity to help. The majority of people fleeing their home country looking for a safer and better way of life come from Syria, but that’s not the only country from which people are migrating. In fact, Afghanistan has attributed nearly 175,000 refugees seeking a new life in 2015. As reported by BBC, a total of 10 countries are among those attributing to the migration crisis in the Britain, including Iraq, Kosovo, Albania, Pakistan, Eritrea, Nigeria, Iran, and the Ukraine.
The cause varies by country but a common denominator among all refugees is trying to find a place to live that offers safety and basic human rights. Syria, for example, has suffered hundreds of thousands of deaths over the years due to civil unrest and war, include the breakdown of the country’s health care infrastructure, the education system, and economy, many are unable to live much less hope to raise a family.
Other countries such as Nigeria, are facing increased civil unrest, the constant fear and threat of local radicals, specifically, Boko Haram. Kanem Mohammad tells his story as he recounts his near death experience and decision to flee his home country when visiting with VOA News saying, “They killed about 15 people in my village that night,” Mohammad said. “They came to our house; they attacked our house. I had to jump the fence. Really, it was hell. In Maiduguri, I saw more than 3,000 corpses before I could run [escape]. When we came here, we had no hope of having anything, thinking that what was happening in Nigeria was to escalate to this place. As we came here, fortunately, the UNHCR took good care of us, and because of the insurgency that is continuing in Nigeria, people come in every day.”
The Social Impact
The strain that this mass migration is putting on many European countries has certainly taken its toll over the recent months, forcing many of the open-arms regions to be forced to deny entry and close their borders. Along with the continued debate of politics and safety of those calling Europe home, many are worried that with the number of migrants entering any given country, the risk of homeland terrorism grows, causing even more strain on the political and social system.
Pros and Cons
Many argue that there are two sides to every coin, and the refugee migration crisis is no different. On one hand, you have the people who support the overall well being and basic human rights these people are denied, while the other side fears for social and economic stability as massive numbers of underprivileged people flood the streets.
In recent news, the United Kingdom’s decision to exit out the European Union has taken the world by surprise, and many are wondering how this decision will impact the migration crisis. While it is true that Europe as a whole is a major destination for many of the refugees, the UK, in particular, has a fairly low count when it comes to weighing in on the refugee crisis. In an article posted by Newstatesman, it was reported that “Despite the tabloid scaremongering, there are far fewer asylum applications per head to the UK than to other countries in the EU. Britain received 60 asylum applications per 100,000 people in 2015, well under the EU-wide average of 260.” Making the UK the lowest in Europe to open its doors and lend a hand. So the newly formed decision to leave the EU and focus on what’s best for the United Kingdom may not have as high of an impact as once believed when it comes to the overall influence of the migration crisis.