The Ukrainian crisis shows that Europe can welcome refugees
- European nations welcomed millions of Ukrainians fleeing the Russian invasion.
- The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said this shows they can take in refugees from other countries.
- He called the contrast in response to the 2015 Syrian refugee migration “racist”.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said the crisis in Ukraine shows Europe is capable of taking in large numbers of refugees and can do so with those fleeing other nations, The Associated reported. Press.
“If it’s possible for so many people, and since it’s proven to be so effective, why not use some of these approaches also for other people who come knocking on Europe’s doors?” said Filippo Grandi.
The response to millions of Ukrainians fleeing Russia’s invasion contrasts sharply with the response of many European countries when millions of refugees, mostly fleeing Syria, tried to enter the continent in 2015. Some countries even built fences to keep migrants out, Reuters reported. .
“We wonder why Ukrainians were welcome in all countries while we Syrian refugees are still in tents and stand in the snow, facing death, and no one is watching us?” Ahmad al-Hariri, a Syrian refugee in Lebanon, told Reuters.
Grandi called efforts to distinguish between Ukrainian refugees and migrants from other countries, such as the Middle East, “racist”.
The EU activated its temporary protection directive for the first time since it was adopted in 2001 in response to the war in Ukraine. The order was put in place following conflicts in the former Yugoslavia and allows those fleeing war in Ukraine to move around EU countries, get jobs, housing, education and health care.
“Heads of government in Europe have spent hours, days negotiating where, who should take a hundred people floating on a boat in the Mediterranean,” Grandi told the AP, referring to the migration of asylum seekers. asylum in 2015. “And then contrary to that, millions (of Ukrainians were) embraced, accepted, allowed to access services in a very efficient way.”