Hungary’s hope-crushing border fence and the right to seek asylum

Syrian refugees in Istanbul, two weeks after the 2013 chemical attack in the Damascus suburbs. Photo: by Freddie Trimble

The conflict in Syria began over four years ago and has since grown into a deadly proxy war which has ignited large regional hostilities, killing more than 300,000 people. The exacerbating humanitarian situation, coupled with international inaction, has led to an epidemic of despair. Concurrently, the conditions in the countries neighbouring Syria are deteriorating due to funding shortfalls as the number of ...

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The Plight of Economic Migrants to Europe: A Far Cry from Benefits Tourism

Refugees or Migrants?

As the EU continues to grapple the logistical aspects of the so-termed ‘European Migrant Crisis,’ a new discussion has arisen about the distinction between migrants and refugees and how each should be treated. Misunderstanding in both public opinion and political policy regarding the differences has dire consequences for the most vulnerable stakeholders — the migrants. Refugees or Migrants? Definitions vary, but according ...

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On the Edge: Diyarbakir’s Refugee Camp, Fidanlik Park

On the Edge Diyarbakirs Refugee Camp Fidanlik Park

The labyrinth of white tents and sand paths of Fidanlik Park leads us into the depths of one of the largest refugee camps in the country, on the outskirts of Diyarbakir, in southeastern Turkey. We almost give up after a brief coversation with the guards that abruptly say ‘No!’ to all our requests to visit the camp. But then, the crowd pulls ...

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Regular Entry Procedures to Europe for Persons in Need of International Protection and the Willingness of European States to Prevent Deaths in the Mediterranean

Regular entry procedures

Introduction The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimated that 51.2 million individuals worldwide were forced to leave their homes because of war, persecution, generalized violence and human rights violations by the end of 2013.1 This was the biggest flight movement since World War II.2 Out of them, 33.3 million were internally displaced persons, 16.7 million were refugees and 1.2 million asylum ...

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Making the journey to the fortress of Europe

This is the true story of my friend O. from the Gambia, who was able to reach the fortress of Europe after a year-and-a-half-long journey. I have known O. as a good and honest friend since 2011, when I went to Gambia for 7 months for an internship. I was working for a USAID-funded NGO called Hands on Care, which offered clinical ...

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Syrian Refugees: A Plea for Humaneness

‘Because humaneness, one can understand, is not welcome in this land and, therefore, [it] decided to emigrate.’ Sadly, Konstantin Wecker’s lines seem to be timeless and transcend borders. I was obligated to complete an Internship within the framework of my studies in human rights at the University of Vienna. My Internship took place at Amnesty International Austria. My adviser is in charge ...

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