• Giulia Vassallo


When we look at the news today, we constantly hear about what we now call the “refugee crisis” and the large influx of immigrants fleeing from various parts of the world such as Africa and the Middle East to Europe in search for a better future for themselves and for their future kids. But when did this all start?

Since 2012, with the rise of ISIS and various wars within the Middle Eastern region, most of the people fleeing from inhabitable small towns in Syria began to move to Turkey. From many pictures also seen in the news today we can understand that Syria today has little standing towns which are actually still habitable and safe, this is mainly due to the large presence of militia groups and bombing wars. 85% of the Syrians, and not only, running away from a disastrous situation in their home land flew to Turkey, meanwhile only 15% of them risked the journey to Europe. To some this “small” percentage may seem shocking due to the large influx of information we take on everyday by the mass media, focusing on the danger and the magnitude of this refugee crisis. We can say that all it took was that small 15% to create a massive shock in the European Union’s political system, making it one of the top priorities of many political campaigns from then on.

The Syrians who had to make this heavy choice of leaving their homeland and fleeing to a safer place were faced with inevitable pain and panic. Between the militia groups from ISIS, the Syrian military and the Russian bombardments most of them had lost their place to live and within their nation land they had nowhere more to go without risking their life and endangering their whole families.

What many people in today’s world don’t know is that the Syrian refugee crisis is not the only conflict that faed a similar dynamic. Yemen faced just as much destruction and death as Syria had during the civil war years. In Yemen, a four- way civil war erupted in 2015 in which a group of rebels known as the Houthi’s were able to rise to power as a result of the Arab Spring and began taking to the streets calling for the end of the Yemenis president for life.

The president would eventually be overthrown, just like with what happened in Libya some years before, and what would be happening still today, in both Libya and Yemen, is a constant battle between the forces that overthrew the old government trying to take control and establish a new government and the old forces trying to resist them.

These conflicts would soon affect the entire region of the Middle East and not only. Neighbouring countries such as Saudi Arabia would be concerned about the events occurring in Yemen and would look to create their brand new army hiring retired Colombian soldiers to fight for them against the Houthi’s. Nations throughout the Soviet Union would look to suppress these uprisings and prevent them from spreading to more neighbouring countries.

We can therefore say that there are many misconceptions about what we today call the “refugee crisis”, and that even though it began in Syria, it also affected many other regions of the Middle East and countries of the entire world.

#Migrations #Europe #MiddleEast #History #Refugee #Borders #Syria #Libya #Immigrants

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