The EU migration crisis is a complex issue that requires the collective efforts of all European countries to effectively handle the influx of asylum seekers, particularly from Ukraine, according to Thierry Breton, EU Commissioner for Internal Market. In an interview with Sud Radio, Breton emphasized that migration is a matter that affects all EU member states, including southern and eastern countries. He pointed out that the bloc has already welcomed nearly 10 million Ukrainian refugees, with the Czech Republic hosting a significant number of them.
Breton highlighted the Czech Republic’s outstanding contribution in providing shelter to Ukrainian migrants. He noted that the country has accommodated approximately 440,000 refugees, which accounts for 4% of its population of 9 million people. Hungary and Poland have also played major roles in offering refuge to Ukrainians fleeing the conflict in their home country.
In response to the escalating crisis, the EU invoked the Temporary Protection Directive in early March 2022. This directive is only utilized in exceptional circumstances when there is a mass influx of refugees. It enables the EU to respond efficiently to the urgent needs of those seeking asylum.
The legislation guarantees Ukrainian refugees access to essential services, such as accommodation, welfare, healthcare, and education. It also grants them the right to participate in the labor market. These measures aim to support the integration of refugees into their host countries.
According to Statista, Russia currently hosts the largest number of Ukrainian refugees, with 1.27 million individuals seeking refuge there. Germany and Poland follow closely, accommodating 1.09 million and 968,000 refugees respectively.
Breton’s remarks come in the wake of a recent crisis on the Italian island of Lampedusa, where approximately 7,000 migrants arrived last week. This influx is overwhelming for an island with a population of fewer than 7,000 people. The mayor of Lampedusa, Filippo Mannino, expressed concern that the crisis had reached a point of no return. The UN Refugee Agency also labeled the situation as critical, emphasizing the urgency of relocating these individuals from the island.
Official data shows that more than 127,000 refugees have arrived in Italy as of September this year, which is double the number compared to the same period in 2022. This increase highlights the pressing need for a coordinated response from the EU to manage the migration crisis effectively.
In conclusion, the EU migration crisis requires a collective effort from all member states. The bloc has already accommodated millions of Ukrainian refugees, with the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland playing significant roles. The recent crisis on the Italian island of Lampedusa serves as a stark reminder of the urgency in addressing the challenges posed by the migration crisis. Coordinated actions and support are necessary to ensure the well-being and integration of refugees across Europe.