Linz – ESI presentation on borders and migration

15 December 2022
Video: SLÖ

ESI’s Gerald Knaus was invited to give an online presentation on “Acting exemplary, talking populist? We (Austrians) and the refugees?”, organised by the Social-Democratic Teachers Association of Upper Austria (SLÖ Oberösterreich).

Gerald described the current polarised debate on migration and refugees and how policies of empathy and control can make a difference. He spoke about the EU’s inhumane borders and how the Mediterranean has become the deadliest border in the world.

Gerald also explained the current refugee crisis in Cyprus and how little is being done to control the arrival of refugees, which is becoming an overwhelming challenge for the country’s government and asylum workers.

With all the migration crises the EU is facing at its borders, migration diplomacy is needed, and bilateral migration agreements must be made between countries of reception and of origin to reduce irregular migration. To do this, countries of reception must offer concrete options for cooperation, to discourage irregular migration and deaths. One of the options is to offer countries visa free travel or annual quotas of labour migration.

Gerald also mentioned other humane solutions such as the Canadian model of resettlement and how other member states in the EU could increase their refugee caps to welcome more refugees who need immediate protection.