Friday, October 5, 2018

The broken refugee resettlement system

Yesterday I posted about progress being made in resettling refugees who have already been granted asylum in some host country.  A much harder political problem is matching refugees to countries that will grant them asylum. The NY Times has a story on those who have crossed the sea to Greece:

‘Better to Drown’: A Greek Refugee Camp’s Epidemic of Misery
By Patrick Kingsley

"The overcrowding is so extreme that asylum seekers spend as much as 12 hours a day waiting in line for food that is sometimes moldy. Last week, there were about 80 people for each shower, and around 70 per toilet, with aid workers complaining about raw sewage leaking into tents where children are living. Sexual assaults, knife attacks and suicide attempts are common.

"The conditions have fueled accusations that the camp has been left to fester in order to deter migration and that European Union funds provided to help Greece deal with asylum seekers are being misused. In late September, the European Union’s anti-fraud agency announced an investigation.
 "Outside Europe, the European Union has courted authoritarian governments in Turkey, Sudan and Egypt, while Italy has negotiated with warlords in Libya, in a successful effort to stem the flow of migrants toward the Mediterranean.

"Inside Europe itself, those who still make it to the Greek islands — about 23,000 have arrived this year, down from 850,000 in 2015 — must now stay at camps like Moria until their cases are settled. It can take as long as two years before the asylum seekers are either sent home or move on."

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