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Wiener Zeitung - Austria | Thursday, October 3, 2013

Asylum policy fails on the Mediterranean

Europe bears its share of the responsibility for the refugee tragedy off the coast of the Italian island of Lampedusa, the state-owned liberal daily Wiener Zeitung observes: "These refugees are often at the mercy of unscrupulous smugglers who put them on boats that are unseaworthy. But Europe too needs to ask itself whether it has the right answer to the thousands of refugees pouring in from Africa. Because Europe always seals itself off, shuts its borders. True, Europe has the right to decide its own immigration policy and grant asylum only to those who are genuinely entitled to it. However the current policy boils down to trying to make it as hard as possible for the refugees to get to Europe and apply for asylum in the first place. The Lampedusa tragedy has once again proven how ineffective this policy is and what fatal consequences it has. Because those who see the journey on a wooden boat to Lampedusa as their last chance will make that journey - no matter how dangerous it may be. Sealed-off borders won't save people's lives."

» To the complete press review of Friday, October 4, 2013

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