Analysing the Causes of the Refugee Crisis and the Key Role of Turkey: Why Now and Why so Many?

34 Pages Posted: 18 Dec 2015

See all articles by Jonathan Zaragoza-Cristiani

Jonathan Zaragoza-Cristiani

European University Institute - Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies (RSCAS)

Date Written: December 2015

Abstract

In this paper, I seek to explain the causes of the massive migratory flows from Turkey to Greece since August 2015. The context of conflict and regional turbulence in the Middle East, together with several events taking place at the beginning of 2015, in which Turkey was directly or indirectly involved, triggered in August the unprecedented refugee crisis that we are still witnessing today. These events led to a sea change, in the period of the 9th to the 14th of August, in the Turkish position towards refugees and in the Syrian refugees’ willingness to wait in Turkey till the end of the war in Syria. The intersection, during these days, between Turkey’s decreasing interest in receiving and controlling Syrian refugees within its territories and the increasing motivation of a significant number of Syrian refugees to leave Turkey, sparked the beginning of the current refugee crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean route. Finally, I will argue that this refugee crisis has accelerated the EU-Turkey accession negotiations in an unprecedented way, and at the same time has increased the leverage power of Turkey.

Keywords: Refugees, European Union, Turkey, migration, refugee crisis

Suggested Citation

Zaragoza-Cristiani, Jonathan, Analysing the Causes of the Refugee Crisis and the Key Role of Turkey: Why Now and Why so Many? (December 2015). Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies Research Paper No. RSCAS 2015/95. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2704901 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2704901

Jonathan Zaragoza-Cristiani (Contact Author)

European University Institute - Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies (RSCAS) ( email )

Villa La Fonte, via delle Fontanelle 18
50016 San Domenico di Fiesole
Florence, Florence 50014
Italy

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