The current wave of refugees from the territory of Ukraine in the first two weeks has already surpassed the migration crisis of 2015-2016 – then about 3 million refugees entered the EU within two years. In 2015 alone, the EU received a record 1.3 million asylum applications from Syrians.
As The Economist notes, the influx of refugees from the Middle East to Europe as part of the previous crisis revealed the existence of problems with the reception of migrants and disagreements among member countries on this issue. During the current wave of refugees from Ukraine, the EU countries are more ready to accommodate people on their territory, which, as the newspaper notes, is due to several factors. The leading role, writes The Economist, is played by the factor of racism: it is easier for Europeans to accept Ukrainians, who are perceived as neighbors, rather than Afghans or Syrians. Also during the previous crisis, the main flow of refugees consisted of young men, but now it is women and children.
Nevertheless, the newspaper writes, problems with the reception of Ukrainians may soon come to light. Thus, most of the refugees settled in Poland, a significant number of people remained in Hungary. At the same time, it was these two countries that previously opposed the admission of migrants to the European Union and criticized the current system of distributing people by country. In addition, the politicians of the host countries are counting on the fact that the refugees will return back to Ukraine after the end of the military conflict. Nevertheless, such a calculation was already made during the conflict in Yugoslavia, and then most of the refugees did not return to their homeland, but settled in the host countries.