12 September 2013, 16:56

Syrian refugees cause problems in Europe

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The US military operation against Syria, if it took place, would seriously worsen the humanitarian situation in the country, which is already difficult. As a result of the armed conflict that has been going on for two and a half years over two million Syrians have fled the country as refugees. By the end of this year their number can reach three million. More and more Syrians are fleeing to Europe. According to the European Asylum Support Office, the number of requests for asylum coming from Syrian citizens has reached 3-3.5 thousand per month in a number of the EU countries and is still growing.

According to official EU figures, 24, 000 Syrian refugees sought asylum in the EU countries in 2012 . This year there is a growth tendency, which so far remains moderate. In the light of a potential military strike on Syria, German Chancellor Hans-Peter Friedrich spoke in favor of conducting a pan-European conference on the issue of Syrian refugees. The German authorities officially expressed their willingness to give asylum to 5, 000 Syrians. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, over a thousand refugees submitted requests for asylum in August. Refugees continue to illegally cross the German border ever since the conflict began.

The Swedish authorities decided to grant permanent residence permits to the Syrians who are already on the territory of the kingdom, as well as to give them the right to move their families to that country. We are talking about 8, 000 people who arrived in Sweden in 2012 and have been issued three-year residence permits.

Meanwhile, not all of the residents of Syria who have reached Europe are happy with their situation given the difference in social and economic environment, as well as language barriers. Here is what Jikhan, the wife of one of the Syrian refugees, has to say:

"It is hard for us here. We fled our country because of the war. If there had been no war, we would have not fled".

In the EU the refugees from Syria also seek asylum in Greece and Bulgaria, where the refugee camps are full. That is why many Syrians have to be housed in detention centers where the conditions leave much to be desired. Syrian refugees get into Greece and Bulgaria via Turkey. At the same time, the Cyprus authorities closed off their country for Syrians to work and study there and absolutely refuse to accept refugees fearing their uncontrolled inflow.

Despite the accusations coming from the European human rights organizations of being indifferent and refusing to accept refugees from Syria, over 50 thousand Syrians have already been granted asylum in the EU countries. According to Sebastien Brabant, a spokesman of the European Commission, the EU has already allocated dozens of millions of Euros to provide humanitarian assistance to the Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

«The financial assistance of 58 million euro is allocated to Lebanon in order to react as a medium and long-term program of serving the needs of Syrian refugees in that country, as well as the needs of the communities receiving them».

In the near future the European Commission will approve another tranche of assistance for the population of Syria itself, as well as for the Syrian refugees in Jordan.

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