Ashleigh Pisani for THE GUARDIAN
Benito Cao, this year’s keynote speaker, shed light on the Syrian refugee situation in Europe.
He said that what is being presented as a crisis is manageable if the European Union pulls together.
At current rates of arrival more than twenty percent of asylum seekers are coming from Syria. This equates to less then 1 per cent of the European population, a sustainable figure given the wealth of Europe, if member states all take their fair share.
Currently, Germany is shouldering the bulk of asylum seekers arriving in Europe and this may lead to a radicalization of politics on both the left and right.
Mr Cao highlighted that Lebanon has taken in a far more substantial proportion of the refugees from Syria. So much so that they now account for 25 per cent of their population and they don’t have anywhere even close to the wealth and resources of the European Union.
Therefore, a new plan must be put in place to relocate and share Syrian refugees among the 28 member states, he said.