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Incredible inflow of refugees driving EU to institutional crisis

September 25, 2015, 17:45 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara
© AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris

MOSCOW, September 25. /TASS/. A hitherto unseen inflow of refugees from the Middle East and North Africa may push the EU into a crisis dwarfing in scale and scope the differences among EU member-states on the financial aid to Greece, while the surmounting of that crisis would be a real uphill fight, experts polled by TASS said on Friday.

An emergency summit of the EU ended in Brussels in the small hours of Thursday with politicians reaching agreement on measures to clear up the immigrant impasse. The EU will allocate €700 million to Macedonia, €100 million to member-states in the form of emergency aid, €600 million to Frontex and Europol agencies, €200 million to the World Food Program, and another €300 million in direct humanitarian aid to refugees, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said.

No less than €1 billion will be allocated to the UN agencies working outside the EU in the countries like Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. All in all, the allocations for settling the immigration crisis will stand at around €9.2 billion in the next two years.

On Thursday, EU Interior Ministers agreed on how to distribute the quotas for admitting the migrants. In the next two years, the twenty-eight member-states will admit 120,000 immigrants in addition to the 40,000 refugees who arrived in Europe in July. The decision drew objections from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, and Hungary, with Finland abstaining from the vote.

Dr. Kirill Koktysh, an assistant professor at the chair of political theory of the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, summed up all the measures proposed at the EU summit as instrument for fighting with the influx of illegal immigrants and struggle with aftermaths rather than the causes of the crisis.

"The decisions evolved in Brussels regarding the unprecedentedly big allocations of aid to the refugees proceed from the assumption that an amount of 9 billion euro will be enough for plugging the problem of the ‘trek of nations’, as it would help dampen the crisis with money," he said. "No one can rule out a new tide of immigrants that will reduce the aforesaid aid to naught."

"In this case, the EU will have to conceive a new clot of emergency measures," Dr. Koktysh said.

"The EU hasn’t invented any enduring means for resolution of the immigration problem," he went on. "And the main stumbling block is how to socialize the hundreds of thousands of descendants from the Middle East and North Africa, how to adapt them to the European way of life. People in Brussels don’t even raise a question about it."

"In the meantime, that’s the most serious challenge to European society, especially in the wake of penetration of the continent by radical Islamic elements," Dr. Koktysh said.

He believes the EU had bumped into irresoluble problems and it was wrapping them up in words and pushing them to the sidetrack.

"As for the distribution of quotas for admittance of refugees among the EU countries, this issue has revealed a split, as the East-Europeans don’t want to share responsibility for the actions of West-Europeans in the Arab world," Dr. Koktysh said. "The EU doesn’t have the instruments of coercion for the acceptance of immigrants at its disposal and that’s why boycotts of the decisions taken in Brussels and an institutional crisis in the EU aren’t ruled out."

"Czechs, Romanians and Slovaks say rightfully that France and Britain smashed the dishes under the US guidance and now they are forcing the countries uninvolved in the ‘Arab spring’ to pay for the smashed teacups," he said, adding that the French President, Francois Hollande, had made a shy but conscientious attempt to hint at the U.S. and Canada’s moral duty to render assistance in the solution of the refugees’ problems.

Dr. Nadezhda Arbatova, the chief of European political research at the Institute of World Economy and International Relations of the Russian Academy of Sciences, agreed that a split existed in the EU ranks.

"Although a decision on the distribution of quotas for the admittance of 160 refugees was adopted by a majority vote, a total of four countries voted against it," she said. "In one way or another, it’s a forced emergency measure that doesn’t clear up the problem in principle and even stimulates an inflow of more refugees."

"The main thing, however, is that it breaks up the EU unity as it doesn’t take account of the majority’s moods or the levels of social stability in some member-states or, in other words, all the factors that national politicians can’t evaded," Dr. Arbatova said.

"And if you take Brussels’s further strategy, a number of steps adopted by the EU look quite reasonable and targeted at resolving the problem of illegal immigration outside the EU, that is, before it becomes the Union’s own internal problem," she said.

"I mean the decision to open by the end of November the centers for reception and registration of refugees on the outer borders of the EU," Dr. Arbatova said. "All these measures should be enforced by an efficacious system of deportation of the immigrants who don’t have the right to seek asylum."

"Still it’s obvious that even the efficient implementation of the steps adopted at the summit in Brussels won’t enable the EU to solve the refugee problem on its own," she said.

"It’s important to rally assistance from the appropriate agencies of the UN and the most affluent countries in the southern Mediterranean and the Persian Gulf," Dr. Arbatova said in conclusion.

On the background of dissonance among European politicians as regards the admittance of refugees, the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill I made a resounding remark earlier this week as he received the Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas.

"Unlike the West that is so nervous because of the arrival of refugees, we accept orders of magnitude more Moslems in Moscow alone than the entire Europe is doing right now but no one in the world knows this because there’s no hysteria, no police sirens, no tear gas, no clashes," he said.

"Surely we get problems with the arriving people, too, but everything is settled in the field of legal decisions," Kirill I indicated that the Christians and Moslems were living as good neighbors in Russia.

"An atmosphere that generates here prompts the Eastern Orthodox Christians to treat Moslems tolerantly, as brothers," Kirill I said. "And when we say Russia is a unique country where there are no inter-ethnic conflicts, we tell the truth then."

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