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Migrants and Refugees: Europe in the World and How the World Sees Europe


The world is moving. During the last forty years, international migration has been multiplied by 4, from 77 millions in 1975 to 258 now, as well as internal migrants (740 millions). China itself has 240 millions of internal migrants and half of them are illegal. This globalisation of migrations, defined by the involvement of quite all countries in this process of departure, arrival and transit, is paradoxically accompanied by a regionalisation process: in all regions in the world, there are more migrants coming from the same region than coming from other parts of the world: this trend is due to the emerging presence of new comers alike refugees, women, unaccompanied minors, environmentally displaced migrants, internally displaced people who rarely go far. This regionalisation of migration can be observed in all regions in the world (Euro-Mediterranean, Northern Americas, Southern America, Russia, Turkey, Gulf countries, Sub-Saharan Africa, South-East Asia, Australia). In the past, the Europeans were many among the migrants in some of these regions. Europe has become a continent of immigration even if it meets difficulties to accept this reality. With 77, 8 millions of migrants, Russia and Ukraine included, Europe has become during these last thirty years one of the first destinations in the world. But immigration does not belong to European identity, nor to national identities in European countries, while emigration is part of many diasporic identities in European countries, because European used in the past to migrate all over the worlds for various reasons. This situation, along with the crisis of European values of solidarity and human rights in a period of economic crisis, explains the reluctance of many European countries, mostly at east, to welcome new comers and to accept with trust the proposal of Brussels of burden sharing. Europe has been confronted with one of its major migration challenges with the refugee crisis of 2015 because it difficultly thinks about itself as an immigration continent and because the public opinion has been worked during years by the rise of extreme rightist movements and parties hostile to migration and refugees.
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hal-02951452 , version 1 (28-09-2020)



Catherine Wihtol de Wenden. Migrants and Refugees: Europe in the World and How the World Sees Europe. Işıl Zeynep Turkan İpek; Gökçe Bayındır Goularas; Edanur Önel. Refugee Crises and Migration Policies. From Local to Global, Lexington Books, pp.1 - 16, 2020, 9781793602084. ⟨hal-02951452⟩
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