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EU Continues Push to Prevent Mass Migration of Refugees

(Author: Libyan Gazette Editorial Staff)

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The EU has been pushing to bring the migration of refugees from North Africa to Europe to an end, just as they stopped the migration of refugees from Turkey by closing the borders of Greece.

The EU was able to end the mass migration from Turkey to Greece by arranging a controversial agreement between the EU and Turkey.

Pilot projects, intended to push African nations to work towards ending the mass migration, are expected to receive support at a summit taking place in Brussels on Thursday.

The pilot projects including providing aid budget to African nations who can assist in preventing people from migrating to Europe. The programs are also intended to allow the EU to send refugees who arrive in Italy back to their homelands.

A senior EU diplomat said, “By the end of the year, we need to see results”.

Italy has received six percent more refugees than this time last year. The total number of migrants that arrived in Italy last year was 154,000.

“We need to clean this up and have migration compacts with African countries in place before next spring,” said the senior EU official.

Humanitarian organizations have spoken against the EU’s push towards creating a “Fortress (around) Europe” instead of providing aid and shelter to refugees that need it.

Raphael Shilhav, migration policy adviser from Oxfam, said that “the need for development aid and Europe’s obligation to alleviate poverty should not be about reducing mobility.”

According to its website, Oxfam is a “global aid and development organization that work(s) towards ending global poverty.”

“The reasons of displacement should be addressed through understanding the situation on the ground, seeking solutions to the conflicts that are driving displacement of people,” said Shilhav.

Moreover, Elizabeth Collett, who serves as a director for the Migration Policy Institute, said that the EU’s plan ” is very much about sending a message to would-be migrants. The political impetus is about sending this discouraging message.”

“There is something inherently distasteful in this new approach for the EU foreign policy because historically they have always been the good guys,” said Collett. “It’s the first time they are being asked not to just be the good guys anymore.”

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