Refugees Welcome? Europe’s Migration Crisis is Topic of Event at University of Pennsylvania

In the summer of 2015, the European migration crisis dominated headlines around the world. Over a million people, including refugees fleeing the devastating civil war in Syria, arrived in Europe seeking asylum that year–at the time, the highest number since the end of the Second World War. The crisis unleashed profound upheaval, causing serious division within the European Union (EU) and a resurgence in anti-migrant rhetoric across the continent. Thousands of migrants died on the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean and those who did arrive exposed severe weaknesses in the EU asylum system, as countries struggled to provide the support they needed. Almost a decade on, the picture remains bleak: thousands of people still risk everything to reach Europe each year, a crisis compounded by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. What drives migrants to Europe and what are their prospects upon arrival? What can the EU do to support migrants in their quest for a better life? Caritas Cyprus’ Elizabeth Kassinis participated in the October 25, 2022 edition of the World Today at the Perry World House where, as part of a panel with University of Pennsylvania Professors Guy Grossman and Nicholas Sambanis, she used experiences from Cyprus in discussing the migration crisis in Europe, its impacts on migrants, and its repercussions for European societies and politics.