European Asylum Policies and the Stranded Asylum Seekers in Southeastern Europe
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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This article focuses on the restrictive European asylum policies and on their humanitarian consequences in Southeastern Europe. We discuss two interrelated topics: (i) the dynamic of the migration of asylum seekers to Europe and (ii) the specific position of Southeastern European countries and the situation of stranded migrants in the region. We identify central elements in the European asylum system and suggest that different parts of the system may be seen as a set of interacting lines of deterrence used to curb asylum migrations. It is argued herein that Greece and the other countries at the southern borders of the European Union have an idiosyncratic position within the European system of deterrence. Furthermore, we discuss how European deterrence policies and local responses influence the migration patterns of asylum seekers in Southeastern Europe. It is maintained that the deterrence measures have contributed to increasing the number of stranded asylum seekers in the region, especially in Greece with clear and regrettable humanitarian consequences.