The arrival of the Taliban to Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, could spur on the migration of large numbers of refugees to the Balkans, although experts say the 2015 migration crisis is probably not going to be repeated. However, Serbia may find itself in a difficult situation because it is the last stop on the migrants’ route to the EU.
No matter how far Afghanistan is from Serbia, the introduction of Sharia law in this southwest Asian country will also be felt in the Balkans. For days now, large numbers of people have been fleeing Afghanistan in a hurry because of the new extremist government which has repealed all secular laws and announced revenge for all those who have collaborated with the Americans.
Many people want to leave the country and have blocked the runway at Kabul airport, preventing planes from taking off. Many of them are fleeing to the West. The land route passes through Turkey and the Balkans, which is why we should expect a new wave of migrants in this part of Europe, especially if we bear in mind that the United States has sent a request to Albania and Pristina to temporarily accept Afghan refugees seeking visas to enter the United States.
The director of the Centre for Protection and Assistance to Asylum Seekers, Radoš Đurović, says a wave of refugees from Afghanistan can be expected in the coming period.
“For several months there has been an increase in asylum seekers in Turkey. The movement of refugees from Afghanistan will certainly increase, especially if corridors are opened for them to leave the country. First of all, refugees will flee to Iran, which is close to them because of the language, but also to Turkey, which is not as far away as it seems. We must not forget that more than 27 million people live in Afghanistan and that the Taliban government is very extremist, very similar to Al Qaeda, and abrogates all secular laws,” Đurovic points out, recalling that the Taliban have used women and children to carry out attacks.
He adds that the key question is how Turkey will treat refugees from Afghanistan.
“We will see whether Turkey will make an agreement with the EU on this issue or simply push the migrants towards Europe. The EU must certainly be prepared to expect new migrants to come to the Greek territory. By the way, the influx of refugees into Serbia has already increased, so from the beginning of the year until 1 July, more than 27,000 have entered our country. Most of them were migrants from Afghanistan, 38%, then from Syria 20%, then from Somalia, Iraq…”
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