As the Syrian conflict persists without any tangible resolution to end it, the Syrian refugee crisis is growing by the day, imposing tremendous burden and challenge on the neighboring countries. Turkey has already been shouldering much of this burden by hosting over 2M Syrian.
Turkey has already spent billions of dollars to accommodate refugees, but it is increasingly affected by economic, political, and social consequences of the Syrian displacement crisis. Recently, refugees from Turkey as well as other hosting countries began to head to Europe in the hope of finding better living conditions. This massive exodus of refugees has led to Europe’s largest humanitarian crisis since World War II.
On 20th November 2015, Mr Fevzi Bilgin, founding president of Rethink Institute, a research organization based in Washington, DC, presented the recent issues about the situation on the ground and explored following issues:
The concrete steps taken to handle the refugee crisis.
Turkey and other hosting countries accommodation on growing number of Syrian refugees
Ways to better integrate refugees in Turkey
European governments doings
The prospects of collaborative efforts by European institutions and Turkey in handling the crisis
The impact of latest legislative election in Turkey on the Syrian crisis
Fellowed Mr Bilgin, Mr Kerim Balci, Turkish writer, journalist and academician Kerim Balci (b. 1971), the editor in chief of Turkish Review, a bimonthly journal published by Zaman Media Group of Turkey, continued his presentation and questioned the reasons behind the immense increase in the number of refugees fleeing to Europe through the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas.
He stated and questioned that are Syrian People running away from the situation in their home countries, or their second homes, Turkey, or are they running towards a future in Europe? He also mentioned detraction of their current lives; and the attraction of stories they hear about Europe.
In his explanations Mr Balci focused on, the side-lines of a picturesque presentation of a Turkish photo-journalist who participated the long walk of the refugees from Syria to Macedonia, questions like the reasons of high number of casualties on the way, legal status of the refugees in Turkey and the impact of Turkey-EU deal on the issue to the future of the refugee flux.
At the end of both inspiring presentations, a Q & A session held and speakers answered over 10 questions that continued as long as their lectures.
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