Monday, August 31, 2015

EUROPE - Migrant Humanitarian Crises

"Thousands of migrants journey through Macedonia, Serbia en route to Europe" PBS NewsHour 8/24/2015


SUMMARY:  In Europe, it's the summer of mass migration. Lindsey Hilsum of Independent Television News follows along as thousands of refugees from the Middle East and North Africa travel by train from Macedonia to Serbia, hoping to eventually reach Germany and other points north.

LINDSEY HILSUM, Independent Television News:  Night falls, but they keep on walking.  Only a few more yards, and they will have left Greece behind.  They will be in Macedonia.  By morning, they’re still walking.

Word has traveled back down the line:  Go to Gevgelija station.  Some have spent the night here.  They have seen worse places on their odyssey.  It’s dirty, but they do their best.  The Macedonians have managed to put order into chaos, despite the swelling numbers.  Syrians and others with small children are given priority.  Extra trains have been laid on to take them to the next border with Serbia.

It’s 110 miles away, a four-hour journey, easy compared to what they have been through before.  They have paid 10 euros per ticket, like any other passenger.

Where are you from?

MAN:  I’m from Syria.

LINDSEY HILSUM:  From Syria?  From which place?

MAN:  Aleppo, Afrin.

LINDSEY HILSUM:  From Aleppo and Afrin, from Afrin.

The U.N. High Commission for Refugees says 7,000 traveled to Serbia this past weekend.  Many people on this train are going from Syria to Germany, so they’re about halfway through their journey.  And this is the point where they’re full of hope.  They’re on the move.  They think they have left the worst behind them.

Germany has said it will take 800,000 people this year.  That’s a lot, but there are many more trains behind this one.  They can’t take everyone and there are thousands more people on the way.  Some are fleeing Aleppo and Bashar al-Assad, others Raqqa and Da’esh, the Islamic State.  What difference does it make?

MAN:  Hard situation in Syria, no power, no water, no Internet, no any help for us.  We can’t stay in Syria.  The — Bashar al-Assad attack us every day, morning, every time, our baby so afraid of light and sound.

LINDSEY HILSUM:  Of the bombs, of the sounds?

MAN:  Of bombs and of the guns every day, every day.  So we left.

"How should Europe deal with its deluge of refugees?" PBS NewsHour 8/25/2015


SUMMARY:  A surge of refugees hit Hungary’s southern border this week, many fleeing the war in Syria.  Most of the refugees are seeking asylum in Northern Europe.  Gwen Ifill talks to David Miliband, CEO of the International Rescue Committee, about how nations are handling the refugee crisis.

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