Immigration in Europe
The issue of immigration in Europe has become one of the pressing subject matters especially for governments within the European Union. In contrast to the United States which has experienced immigration for centuries, for Europe this issue is of a recent demographic inclination since the past five decades or so. There are several migrants who make an attempt to move into Europe and settle there. This particular paper will seek to discuss three immigrant groups that form the majority of the immigrants who seek to enter the EU borders. These three immigrant groups include Syrians, Afghans and Eritreans.
Immigrant Groups and their Push and Pull Factors
There are numerous physical, social and economic reasons and factors that play a great role in the reason as to why people migrate to different nations or expanses and these factors can be normally categorized as 'push' and 'pull' factors. In definition, push factors are the reasons which are connected and linked to the region of origination while on the other hand pull factors are the reasons that are linked with the region of destination. As per the International Organization for Migration (IOM), migrants in excess of 350,000 were identified at the borders of the European Union between the period of January and August 2015 in comparison to an estimated 280,000 migrants spotted in the whole year 2014. In addition, it is imperative to take note that this figure does not encompass the several who got into the EU without being detected (BBC, para. 4).
The largest immigrant group in terms of population that was detected at the EU border are the Syrians. The push factor for migration of this particular group is the vicious civil war within the country that is causing several people to flee. The civil war in Syria began about two years ago when the government made an attempt to suppress the Arab Spring organization demonstrators. This in turn resulted in a full scale rebellion. As a result, more than half a million Syrians have been affected, and left the nation seeking safe destinations elsewhere. Most of these immigrants are refuge and asylum seekers. The other push factor is homelessness as several people within the nation have been rendered homeless and in turn are forced to live in camps in Syria or in neighboring nations such as Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey (Semple, para. 1).
Another important push factor is the lack of economic growth. The civil war has caused political instability and flight of numerous people, in turn causing a high rate of unemployment and also a very low economic potential. On the other hand, the pull factors include the fact that European nations gain by access to a workforce who are willing to do menial jobs which the local citizens are unwilling to undertake. The pull factors are largely due to the economic opportunities available in the European Nations. Nations such as the United Kingdom and Germany have a strong welfare system. For instance, these refuge and asylum seekers are entitled to gain access to health care and also benefits such as accruing social benefit allowances for those without jobs. Another push/pull factor is that these immigrants might have cultural ties with family as well as friends already staying in the European nations.
A great number of those immigrants whose destination is Greece use the comparatively short journey from Turkey to the islands of Lesvos, Chios, Samos and Kos. These voyages are, more often than not, undertaken in small wooden boats or dinghies made of rubber. On the other hand, the journey from Libya with the destination being Italy is much longer and dangerous compared to the others (BBC, para. 6).
This can be seen in a number of calamities and misfortunes that took place in the current year. For instance, in August 2015, two boats ferrying around five hundred migrants sunk off Zuwara in Libya. Additionally, in February 2015, it was feared that around three hundred migrants drowned as they made an effort to sail through the rough Mediterranean Sea. In the month of April, a shipwreck that took place off the island...
In addition, the chaos and anarchy, taking place in Libya has presented traffickers with the opportunity and freedom to exploit these migrants (BBC, para. 6).
The next group of immigrants that make an attempt to enter the European Union borders are the Afghans and the Eritreans. These two sets of immigrants' push factors encompass the state of affairs at home as the main reason causing them to flee their country. With respect to Syria, there are direct threats to life, irrespective of which side of the conflict one takes. On the other hand, with respect to Eritrea, a tyrannical military rule and an unresponsive economy prompt numerous thousand to stride across its terrestrial borders each month. Callous and unselective enlistment drives can also increase exoduses, as can altercations in border observation posts, coupled with the prevalent, infamous 'shoot to kill' guiding principle (Eliott, para. 3).
State of affairs in neighboring nations of passage, for example Sudan, Ethiopia, Israel, Egypt or Libya, can have the utmost impact on whether migrants and refugees choose to stay back or continue exodus to the EU. The placement of a barrier on Israel's border two years ago and disparaging military invasions in the Sinai Peninsula have harshly diminished the transferring of Eritreans through Egypt into Israel and unlocked up an alternate trafficking course through Khartoum and onto Libya. In other adjoining nations such as Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan there have been encampment policies and guiding principles which have been put to effect and which in turn limit the free movement of the migrants to different parts of the nation. As a result they are restricted in availing services, education, work and therefore most of them are discouraged in settling down (Eliott, para. 4). In the nation of Egypt, subsequent to the expulsion of President Morsi from authority and supremacy, there has been a sequence of attacks and invasions on Syrian migrants in the country, indicted for taking sides with the presently proscribed Muslim Brotherhood.
European Destination and Settlement
One of the destination countries for immigrants in the European Union is Greece. According to (Park, para. 8), by the year 2012, about 50% of migrants arriving and entering the European Union unlawfully attained this through Greece. This tendency was restricted in the subsequent year after Greek establishments improved border controls as accounted for in Operation Aspida, which encompassed the building of a barbed-wire barrier at the boundary between Greece and Turkey. In a reversal of situation, however, by July this year, Greece had yet again come to be the favored Mediterranean point of entry (Park, para. 8).
Statistics indicated that there were 132,240 unlawful EU boundary passages by mid-year 2015, a figure that is five times the quantity identified for the similar period in the preceding year. A great percentage of the migrants consisted of individuals from Syria and Afghanistan who journeyed from Turkey to Greece within mid-period of the year. It is imperative to take note that the most current upsurge of migrants into Greece came about in a simultaneously time period coinciding with the host nation, Greece facing its worst debt crisis and this in turn adversely affected the banking system, of the nation as well as its government administration (Park, para. 8).
Other European destination for the migrants was Italy. The Central Mediterranean channel or passageway which connects Italy and Libya was the most journeyed passage and course for migrants who were bound for Europe in the preceding year. According to Park (para. 9), statistics indicate that an excess of 170,000 prohibited journeys across the border into Italy took place. Towards the end of last year, the nation established a search and rescue program referred to as Mare Nostrum, which in turn was carried out to saving the lives of more than 100,000 migrants (Park, para. 9).
This program was subsequently replaced by a smaller program for border control referred to as Frontex Triton Program, whose fund allocation was two thirds less than the previous program in terms of the operating budget. However, in the month of April this year, the leaders of the Europe Union tripled this operating budget to a total of nine million Euros every month. However, the EU leaders declined to extend the scope of the program to encompass search and rescue missions (Park, para. 9).
Despite the fact that the number of unlawful border passages into Italy from January 2015 until June continued to increase, standing at 91,302, the increasing death numbers, estimated to be in excess of 2,000 people in this period, and the worsening security state of affairs in Libya have enforced numerous migrants to try to find substitute pathways to Europe by means of access through Greece and the Balkans. About 90% of the migrants who made use of this channel came from Eritrea as also…
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