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The Explosion of Migration and the Iraqi ‘Poland-Belarus’ Crisis

Nov. 10, 2021 (EIRNS)—There are about 281 million migrants in the world as of late 2020, according to the UN-related intergovernmental International Organization on Migration (IOM). This figure does not include internally displaced migrants within a country. This international migration represents about 3.6% of the world’s population. This figure was only 153 million in 1990, and before that, it is estimated to have been about 90 million back in 1970. The growth of the problem is part of the dirty underside of the treatment of the underdeveloped world, the spread of wars, and so on.

Most of the migrants are in Europe (87 million), Asia (86 million) and North America (59 million). However, relative to population, migrants are 22% of Oceania (mainly Australia), 16% of North America and 12% of Europe. Yet, over the last 20 years, it is Asia that has had the most growth in absolute terms, adding 37 million more people. Europe follows with 30 million more, North America 18 million, and Africa 10 million.

On Nov. 8, the IOM issued a joint statement with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) regarding the immediate crisis on the Belarus-Poland border, particularly regarding the makeshift camp of refugees near the border crossing point of Bruzgi, Belarus. The largest group of refugees there are from Iraq, and from three Iraqi Kurdish towns: Irbil, Shiladze and Sulaymaniyah. But Syria, the Congo and Cameroon are also represented. For most of them, the route through Poland has as its destination Germany. The joint statement refers to several deaths already occurring over the last weeks, with the danger of much more suffering and deaths. It offers help, but logistics are difficult on the Poland side with an emergency military situation having been declared, and help on the Belarus side is contingent on the government there creating holding areas away from the border.

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