Tilovska-Kechedji, Elena and Susak, Ivona and Stefanovski, Valentina (2017) THE BALKAN ROUTE: A NEVER ENDING TRAGIC STORY. KNOWLEDGE – International Journal, 3 (20). pp. 1449-1454. ISSN 1857-923X

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Since 2015 more than half a million people migrated in many of the European Union Countries through the Western Balkan route. Most of the migrants traveled from Syria and its neighboring countries via Turkey, Greece and the Western Balkans to the Western European countries in order to seek asylum and a better life. There are a couple of routes that the migrants use, one is the Western Mediterranean route, the Central Mediterranean route that is the most deadly, and Eastern Mediterranean route through Turkey and Greece. The Balkan route was opened and used because the migrants that passed through these countries were not there to stay and seek asylum but to transit and move to Germany and the other EU member states. The Balkan countries cannot host the migrants because they do not have the capacities due to different circumstances but on the other hand, the migrants don’t want to seek asylum in these countries their destination is upward. From 2015 the Balkan route was a fast transit route, migrants passed from Serbia to Hungary, or toward Croatia and Slovenia. This scenario changed with the introduction of new stricter asylum policies and closing of the borders by many EU states and implementing of the EU-Turkey agreement which was planned to close the Balkan Route. On 18th of March 2016 was signed the EUTurkey Statement to end the flow of irregular migrants and replace it with safe and legal means. EU promised Turkey financial help and resettling the refugees directly from Turkey to other EU member states. Although the deal was partly successful and reduced the inflow of legal refugees it also left many refugees stranded in the Balkan countries territories especially in Serbia and Macedonia which is a great burden for this countries. The closing of the borders or the closing of the Balkan Route it may decrease the frequent inflow of refugees but it did not stop the irregular migration, in fact, it increased it, which opened the doors for smugglers, and new alternative routes opened like the route between Serbia and Bulgaria. In order to stabilize the refugee crisis, especially the problems with the strained refugees and to prevent the other possible scenarios that may arise as a consequence of the above situation, there should be increase in the regional cooperation, straightening the border management, balance the reception capacity, the EU assistance to be increased as well as the humanitarian support and the fight against smugglers these have to be the key steps that need to be taken to stabilize the crisis.
Keywords: Balkan Route, Turkey agreement, EU policies, refugees, border securitization

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Scientific Fields (Frascati) > Social Sciences > Law
Scientific Fields (Frascati) > Social Sciences > Political science
Scientific Fields (Frascati) > Social Sciences > Other social sciences
Divisions: Faculty of Law
Depositing User: Mr Mladen Kradzoski
Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2019 10:05
Last Modified: 09 Oct 2019 10:05

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