In light of recent terrorist acts, the European Union has begun making decisions on open border policies and free travel within member countries. Policy makers are hesitant in their decisions and proposals, some unsure of the line between security and xenophobia. While delegates grapple between these ideological conflicts, many assert refugees need help on the other side.
“We are discussing open borders and their future inside the European Union, especially facing the recent crisis of the rise of terrorism and the migrant crisis flowing into the Union and causing a recent rise in nationalist and xenophobic settlement.” a delegate from the United Kingdom explained. “As a country whose population decided to leave the E.U. because of a fear of massive migration,” he continued “…we really want to underline the need for national sovereignty and independence regarding borders. The E.U. should principally be an economic union and anything that relates to migratory policies should be dealt with by the individual nations themselves. However we also believe the E.U. should incite a more collaborative approach to fighting terrorism with the expansion of information programs and information sharing as well as developing and strengthening the E.U. coastguard.”
A German delegate, who fervently spoke on the podium about the need to evaluate the immediate threat against refugees and ensure their safety added that “…we are specifically focusing on the security solutions for refugees and assuring that nationalism is under control. We are working with a lot of other nations to take their policies and their countries and put them into a solution. The term ‘blacklist’ was used to describe whether we can or cannot take refugees; we’re trying to use the term evaluation to assure that we’re getting the refugees that need the most care and the most immediate care and then take other people in a time of crisis.”
While the debates in the European Union continue, refugees will continue to flow into the continent from war zones like Syria and Somalia. Though the issue of border security remains, the German delegate reminded us that “…accepting all people is human fulfillment,” and this discussion and waiting period has a cost.
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