The many adventurous paths that lead to a European Union: involving politics, society, culture, economics, finance, the military.
A co-authored blog to describe the complexity of a new concept.
The Swedish winter is a season full of lights behind the windows and on the streets: the time of year to toast with glögg, a spiced wine, flavoured with almonds and raisins. The drink is distributed by street vendors in the many Christmas markets, between the stalls of craft products. This is the reason why so many say that the celebration is even more magical in Sweden.
28th August 1995, Sarajevo. After avoiding the Serbian-Bosnian or the Muslim snipers people wander about the market stands to find something to eat. For a year now the streets of the city are full of clashes between the Serbian-Bosnian group, which is faithful to the ideals of Yugoslavia and linked to the government of Belgrade and the Bosnian-Muslim group, which won the referendum in 1992 and established independence from Bosnia. Five mortar rounds are fired among the fruit stands left half empty at around 11.00am. The result of the attack is 43 dead and 75 wounded.
Radicalisation is a phenomenon that has been striking not only in parts of Asia and Africa but also in the heart of Europe. While the number of Muslims in Germany is estimated at 4.7millions (5.8%), 70% of the almost 900,000 asylum-seekers that have arrived in recent years are believed to be Muslims. It is undeniable that there is discrimination in Germany, and it is equally undeniable that more should be done on the issues of integration and conflict prevention. So, could effective integration processes prevent the radicalisation of Muslim youth in Europe?
It takes refugees up to twenty years to have similar employment as the native born. In the first five years after arrival in the host country only one in four refugees is employed. After ten years in the country, the employment rate is about 56%, three points less than other groups of migrants and at least nine points less than the native born. Being unemployed for a long time makes it difficult for a native person to regain access to the labour market, but for a refugee it is quite impossible. That’s what is written in a report by the OECD and the Employment DG of the EU Commission.
Labour exploitation, child marriage, and unprepared authorities. That’s what happens when refugees are excluded from any form of human rights and from the human beings status. All this is documented in a Caritas report on trafficking of human beings analysing ten countries in the Euro-Mediterranean area.
Just as Mariano Rajoy recently warned, Spain will likely face its third general election in less than a year after the two parties that secured the largest share of the vote in its latest poll again failed to strike a power-sharing deal. Despite being asked to form a new government by King Felipe VI after two inconclusive elections, Rajoy’s People’s Party (PP) has been unable to secure the support it requires from the socialist Partido Socialista Obrero Español (PSOE), even after months of drawn-out negotiations.
The latest news from Ulster, on 29th July, have been a stark reminder of the possible impact of the return of customs checks, while in Belfast clashes between communities are occurring even about flags hoisted in neighborhoods: loyalist protestant militants celebrated, near Annadale Flats, the fallen men of the UDA (the Ulster Defence Association, an armed organization that caused the death of many Catholics in the Nineties) placing a memorial plate along with a flag created to commemorate the Battle of the Somme. A Republican march scheduled on August 7th won’t be allowed to transit in some areas of the City center (last year clashes with loyalist groups erupted along its route).