Four million refugees from Syria and what are we doing…

According to UN number of refugees passes four million for Syria conflict and the head of the UN’s refugee agency, Antonio Guterres said that Europe would need to help more as the crisis worsened. So what would you expect from Europe in this situation? Read few comments.

Nadim Shehadi, Director, Fares Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies, Fletcher School at Tufts University, Associate Fellow, Middle East and North Africa Programme, Chatham House

It is true that the record of Europe in accepting and assisting Syrian refugees can be improved but the scale of the problem is so huge that dealing with a small part of the humanitarian crisis will not make much difference. There needs to be a concerted international effort to address the problem and not the symptoms.

James Pattison, Professor of Politics, University of Manchester

I think that the European states should be doing much more. They have a “responsibility to protect” the Syrian refugees. This does not simply equate to trying to tackle the Assad regime or ISIS, e.g. by military means, but to so what they can to ameliorate the crisis. The UK, to my mind, has not done anywhere near enough in terms of accepting Syrian refugees. They are morally obliged to do much more and the focus should be on addressing the crisis rather than trying to defeat ISIS or Assad.

Gabriele IacovinoResponsabile Analisti, Ce.S.I. – Centro Studi Internazionali

Right now, the refugees issue in Europe is of difficult approach. The last decision of a possible redistribution of refugees arrived in Italy and Greece in other country is still far from being to be implemented. And to ask to Europe a bigger commitment right now seems like a difficult path. However, the role of UN could be very important in the creation of a common ground of discussion.

Rodger Shanahan, Nonresident Fellow, Lowy Institute for International Policy

The numbers are so large that relocation is not an option for any but a small proportion. The harsh reality is that if one cannot relocate them then they must continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the refugee host countries, perhaps attempt to get other regional countries to assist and look at the border security implications of their actions. Assistance should be given that alleviates their situation where they are – Europe must avoid policies that establish ‘pull factors’ for Syrians to try to get to Europe and claim refugee status.



2 Responses

  1. Perhaps Professor Pattison could enlighten us as to where we are supposed to put all these people, given how overcrowded our country already is.

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