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EU’s plan to bomb ships in attempt to stop refugee flow is recognition of failure

May 20, 2015, 18:16 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara
© AP Photo/Manu Brabo, File

MOSCOW, May 20. /TASS/. The European Union’s plans for a military operation to destroy ships that bring illegal migrants to Europe from Africa across the Mediterranean are an indisputable recognition of utter failure suffered by the West as a result of its policies that brought about the "Arab Spring" chain of rebellions and the replacement of regimes in the Middle East and Northern Africa, polled experts have told TASS.

The European Union intends to launch a military operation in the Mediterranean next month against smugglers who arrange for the illegal transportation of migrants from Northern Africa to Europe. The foreign and defence ministers of the EU member-countries made the decision in Brussels on Tuesday.

The president of the Middle East Institute, Yevgeny Satanovsky, points to a number of questions the EU countries’ intention to bomb ships that carry migrant across the Mediterranean Sea arouses. "How will the Europeans be able to identify the suspicious fishing boats and coastwise ships, which on different days may be used interchangeably ‘as intended’ and for smuggling refugees? Any act to destroy a ship without solid evidence proving involvement in the transportation of illegal migrants will look like an act of piracy. In the meantime, proving that the ship owners are involved in any kind of illegal activity will be impossible. Each carrier will easily say the passengers were making a boat trip," Satanovsky said.

The other question is where the illegal migrants from the ships to be destroyed will be allowed to disembark, Satanovsky says. "Taking them back to Africa would be hardly possible for security reasons, while letting them set foot on European soil will not resolve the refugee flow problem at all. And should innocent people get killed when a suspicious ship is destroyed in the Mediterranean, the government of any European country responsible will be instantly banished for such a cynical and inhuman act in defiance of international law," Satanovsky said.

"The EU High Representative for the Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, argues that terrorists may be hiding among the illegal migrants. But there is no surer way of causing the Islamists to rally together against the Europeans than launching the European Union’s military operation in the Mediterranean," Satanovsky warns.

"However bad the regimes of Muamar Gaddafi and Saddam Hussein the West overthrew had been, during their rule there was nothing like the current huge flow of migrants to Europe. Moscow had warned its EU partners what the West-engineered ‘Arab Spring’ in the Middle and North Africa was fraught with. The warnings fell on deaf ears. Now the Europeans have to face the music," the analyst said.

The director of the Globalization Problems Institute, Mikhail Delyagin, too, sees the ‘Arab Spring’ effects and the elimination of Libya as a sovereign state as the root causes of the soaring flow of refugees to Europe.

"Lacking an independent policy in the Middle East and North Africa, the European Union has preferred to follow in the US footsteps, just as it was the case with the bombardments of former Yugoslavia. Maintaining world chaos is the a tactic the United States frequently resorts to to hamstring competitors, those in Europe in the first place. The European Union has walked into this trap and now it is racking brains over how to address the illegal migrants problem," Delyagin told TASS.

"Instead of restoring life in Libya to normal and promoting the integration of refugees the European Union is going to destroy ships that carry victims of its own cynical policies. If a decision in favor of a military operation is made, the Europeans will in fact discard their own officially professed values, such as tolerance, political correctness and commitment to human rights," Delyagin believes.

The director of the Political Studies Institute, Sergey Markov, blames the current humanitarian disaster in Northern Africa on NATO’s crackdown on the Gaddafi regime in Libya. "The handful of victims of his repression fades into insignificance next to the number of Libyans dying by poverty and the refugees that get drowned in the Mediterranean on the way to Europe. That’s the cost being paid for the European countries’ lack of geopolitical vision and for the absence of responsibility for their actions," Markov, a member of Russia’s Civic Chamber, has told TASS.

"The proposal for bombing ships that carry illegal migrants is unconstructive. The EU’s mistakes must be corrected through international cooperation. There should be not a military operation in the Mediterranean, but a global effort to help Libya regain its statehood and restore its ruined economy," Markov believes.

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