For months now, Europe Union member states have been devastated by numerous terrorist attacks and acts of violent crime, many of which were perpetrated at the hands of people who sought asylum from persecution in their home countries in the Middle East and Northern Africa. Here is just a small sample of our headlines from the past couple of months:
But despite the violence that seems to follow Europe's growing migrant population, European Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos says that member states are falling short of fulfilling "their duty" to help international refugees. As such, Avramopoulos has threatened economic penalties as early as September for states that refuse to accept their 'fair share' of 160,000 Syrian refugees currently residing in Italy and Greece. Per Yahoo News:
The EU on Thursday stepped up warnings that countries could be punished if they fail to share the burden of mainly Syrian refugees stranded in Greece and Italy.
Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos said member states had until September to take in 160,000 Syrian and other refugees from the two countries, which have been on the frontline of the migration crisis.
So far only 13,500 have been relocated in a process bogged down by general inertia and resistance from Eastern European states which oppose Muslim immigration.
"If we don't have tangible efforts by September... the commission will not hesitate to make use of its power," Avramopoulos, who is Greece's EU commissioner, told a news conference.
The EU has been trying to convince members states "to do their duty," he said.
"But if it is not the case in the future, infringements might be an option," he said.
Several Eastern European countries like Hungary and Slovakia have proposed paying "solidarity" contributions instead of actually taking in any migrants. But others, such as France and Germany, insist that no country can shirk its duty to admit a minimum number of refugees under the plan, which was pushed through in September 2015.
Meanwhile, confirming what most of us deduced long ago via the application of just a bit of common sense, Europol and Frontex, Europe's border and coast guard agency, recently admitted that their intelligence indicates coordinated efforts on the part of ISIS to recruit asylum seekers, both in Syria and in migrant camps after they've already reached Europe, to carry out terrorist attacks. In a report published by Europol, counter-terrorism experts warned that, among other things, "Syrian refugee diaspora may become vulnerable to radicalisation once in Europe and may be specifically targeted by Islamic extremist recruiters."
- Radicalised persons are not necessarily profound believers
- Elements of the (Sunni Muslim) Syrian refugee diaspora may become vulnerable to radicalisation once in Europe and may be specifically targeted by Islamic extremist recruiters
- The majority of attacks claimed by IS appear to be masterminded and perpetrated by individuals inspired by IS, rather than those who work with the organisation directly
- Intelligence suggests that IS has assembled teams in Syria which are sent to the EU tasked with carrying out attacks
- Training possibilities for IS are believed to be decreasing in Syria
The report went on to note that "German authorities were aware of around 300 recorded attempts made by jihadists to recruit refugees" as of April 2016 while Merkel continued to relentlessly push her "open-border" policies.
The majority of attacks carried out in the name of IS appear to have been masterminded and performed by individuals who were inspired by IS, rather than those who worked with the terrorist organisation directly. Intelligence suggests, however, that IS has also put together teams in Syria which are sent to the EU tasked with carrying out attacks. It is believed that this ‘external terrorism network’, began sending fighters abroad two years ago.
Given that it is in the interests of IS to inflame the migration crisis to polarise the EU population and turn sections of it against those seeking asylum, there is a risk of some infiltration of refugee camps and other groups. The extent of this is unknown, however, making the subject susceptible to exaggeration and exploitation especially by populist factions and (extreme) right-wing parties. A real and imminent danger is the possibility of elements of the (Sunni Muslim) Syrian refugee diaspora becoming vulnerable to radicalisation once in Europe and being specifically targeted by Islamic extremist recruiters. It is believed that a number of jihadists are travelling through Europe for this purpose. According to unconfirmed information, German authorities were aware of around 300 recorded attempts made by jihadists to recruit refugees who were trying to enter Europe by April 2016.
But despite all of the evidence to the contrary, we're sure this next wave of 160,000 migrants are all peaceful folks who just want their opportunity to assimilate and succeed in western culture.