Millions of people around the world are on the move today in search of a safe and better life. It’s estimated over 100 million people were displaced last year. Over 30 million are refugees and 5 million are asylum seekers. The UN body for refugees says 72% of the refugees originate from just five countries: Syria, Venezuela, Ukraine, Afghanistan and South Sudan. These refugees are often fleeing persecution, conflict, violence, natural disasters and human rights violations. They make the dangerous journey across land and sea to seek asylum in other countries. Over the years, thousands have died or gone missing in the the Mediterranean trying to reach Europe. While, with help from the UNHCR and host countries, many get legal status and are settled, thousands are held in processing centres and camps, often for years. We discuss problems with the current international asylum system and ask what would a fair global asylum system could look like?
Owen Bennett Jones is joined by:
Gerald Knaus – the founding chairman of German think tank The European Stability Initiative.
Jeff Crisp – former head of policy development and evaluation at the UNHCR.
Dr Ashwini Vasanthakumar – author of The Ethics of Exile: A Political Theory of Diaspora. She writes on the ethics and politics of migration.
Ahmed – a migrant, an asylum seeker and a refugee, who fled Syria in 2015 and is now settled in the UK>
Alexander Downer – Australia’s former foreign minister.
Ylenja Lucaselli – A member of the Italian Parliament for Fratelli d’Italia.
(Photo: The number of people crossing the English Channel has risen in recent years. Credit: PA)
Producer: Rozita Riazati and Rumella Dasgupta.