With 2019 three quarters of the way through, fears of a second migrant crisis continue to grow as the number of migrant arrivals in Europe has increased substantially compared to 2018.
According to a report by the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), the amount of migrants who’ve sought asylum in Europe in 2019 has already surpassed last year’s figure by 10 percent, Die Welt reports.
In its asylum trends report, EASO states: “So far in 2019 more applications have been lodged compared to last year: between January and August 2019 more than 456,000 applications have been lodged in the EU+, up by 10% compared the same period in 2018.”
Most migrants who sought asylum in the European Union in 2019 were from Syria, Afghanistan, Venezuela, Iraq, Pakistan, Colombia, and Turkey.
Germany, France, and Spain absorbed the vast majority of these migrants.
Greece has also been hard but the dramatic uptick of migrants flowing into Europe. The country was forced to absorb over 12,000 migrants this September, more than any month in 2018 or 2019. So far this year, 46,100 migrants have made their way to Greece, compared to 37,300 in the previous year.
Following threats from Turkish President Recep Erdogan to ‘flood’ Europe with 3.6 million additional migrants, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called on NATO to increase its naval patrols in the Aegean to prevent an onslaught of illegal migrants landing in Greece.
Amid the growing crisis, there have been more and more calls from centrist politicians for the EU to revamp its utterly dysfunctional migration policy.
While speaking with journalists from Die Welt, Kai Wegner, the chairmen of the Berlin Christian Democratic Union party, stated: “It is high time for a paradigm shift in the EU’s rescue policy based on the Australian no-tolerance principle.”
“This would mean bringing back all the people caught up in the Mediterranean without exception. This would reduce the incentives for crossings with non-oceangoing boats to zero and finally put an end to the deaths on the Mediterranean,” Wegner added.