European Migration and Diversity

EPC in the refugee crisis debate

The challenge of the migration crisis - Can the EU find solutions?

15 July 2015

Europe’s neighbourhood is currently experiencing unprecedented instability. Millions of people are on the road to exile as the direct result of wars, conflicts, dictatorships and failed states. Increasing numbers – many of whom are fleeing for their lives – are, not surprisingly, trying to seek protection in Europe, a phenomenon that is placing severe strain on the EU’s external borders and national protection systems. Faced with the worse humanitarian crisis since World War II, the EU and its member states must address an extremely complex situation: avoiding deaths at sea, delivering protection to those in need within and beyond the EU, managing migration and coping with security issues, not least the growing terrorist threat.

However, finding suitable solutions to these challenges is not always easy and has already led to tensions between the European Commission and member states. What should be done to overcome these challenges? What should be the priorities? What about solidarity between member states and towards third countries? In this Policy Briefing, Peter Sutherland, United Nations Special Representative for International Migration and Development and Honorary President of the European Policy Centre (EPC), outlined the challenges of the current situation and discussed what can be done to ensure that Europe’s migration policy is fit for purpose.

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