Refugees and Migrants on the Move: The Moment of Truth for the EU and the Middle East?

Wednesday 07 October, 2015
6:30 - 9:30pm, $0

Columbia University, International Affairs
420 West 118 Street, Room 1501

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Panel I 630 to 745 p.m.
Refugees and migrants are pouring into Europe with ever increasing numbers, and the fault lines in the EUs architecture are coming to the fore. Moral values collide with practical concerns, while public opinion fluctuates between compassion and fierce hostility. Will these centrifugal forces tear the EU apart and undo the Schengen agreement? Will the immigration debate reopen the discussion whether the concept of Europe is merely an artificial post-WWII construct forced down the voters throat? How are nationalism and human rights mediated in the current crisis?
Panel II 800 to 915 p.m.
As Europe dithers and the rest of the world keeps its distance, three countries carry the burden of hosting some four million refugees Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. Is that sustainable? Can rich countries refuse to share their burden, and leave UNHCR with only one third of the resources it seeks, without aggravating the crisis? How do these host countries cope, and how are their internal politics affected? How do regional proxy wars feed on the humanitarian catastrophe? What are the proposals to resolve this crisis which is destroying families, wasting human capital, and setting the Middle East back for a generation or more?
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