Dr Jeff Crisp, RSC Research Associate, has written a new essay on the Syrian refugee crisis for the Middle East Institute (Washington, DC). Here he outlines the distinctive characteristics of this refugee emergency, before examining the predicted consequences for national, regional, and international security.
He writes, “The Syrian refugee crisis is a symptom of the disorder which currently exists in the international system. At the end of the Second World War, the U.N. Security Council was established with the task of maintaining international peace and security. It has completely failed to attain that objective in Syria, and four of the Council’s five Permanent Members are now actively engaged in the country’s bitter conflict... The day when Syria’s refugees can begin to think about going home still seems to be very far away. Indeed, many of the refugees who have moved on to Europe say that they have done so because they have lost all hope that peace will be restored in Syria, and because they cannot envisage ever living a dignified life in the MENA countries that have offered them asylum.”
The impact in terms of security has, he says, “been less dramatic than many commentators had anticipated”, whether pertaining to social unrest or radicalization.
“If there is one form of disorder that has been generated by the Syrian refugee emergency,” he states, “then it is to be found in the way that the E.U. and many of its member states have responded to the arrival of asylum seekers” and the threat this poses to the international refugee regime, a regime established by industrialized nations “as a means of maintaining a secure and humane international order.”
He ends by outlining four forms of international cooperation that are required to protect Syria’s refugees and to prevent the crisis from creating further disorder in the Middle East.
Read the full blog here >>