In the year 2015, pictures of a three year old boy’s body washed ashore in Turkey made global headlines, Aylan Kurdi drowned with his five year old brother and his mother trying to get to Greece. His father, who survived was given the opportunity to resettle in another country said, “Now I don’t want anything what was precious is gone.”
‘Refugee crisis’ which has often been wrongly called ‘Migrant crisis’, where migrants choose to leave their homes in search of better education, or better employment opportunities, refugees on the other hand, according to United Nations High Commissioner on Refugees “are persons fleeing armed conflict or persecution. These are those people for whom the denial of asylum has led potentially deadly consequences.”
Ever since 1951 Refugee Commission, refugees have had certain rights under the international law, these include right not to be returned to their country of origin if their safety cannot be assured and various other rights under the same.
In the summer of 2015, The continent of Europe experienced the arrival of highest number of refugees since the Second World War. For years, human traffickers have preyed, refugees pay these smugglers huge amounts, but the fee does not guarantee their safety, thousands have drowned trying to cross the Mediterranean, hundreds more trying to make their journey on land. These laws have put a lot of pressure on European frontline countries. Many of these countries have opened their arms towards welcoming these refugees whereas, many resist.
We need to understand that we are sharing one, profoundly interconnected world and when the oppressed and marginalized die, it is the duty of the other half of the world to protect them.
We have for too long laboured under the delusion that regional crisis have no global importance. Imagining any widespread human problem belonging to someone else is catastrophically misguided.