Strategic Foresight Initiative Nonresident Senior Fellow Jennifer D. Sciubba writes for the Washington Post on how strained resources and xenophobia are creating a difficult landscape for migrants arriving in Greece:
Greece’s problems are many. Thanks to the financial crisis, citizens have endured long ATM lines and shortages in stores. Greece may be the last place in Europe equipped to handle its newest problem: record numbers of migrants, particularly Syrians, arriving daily by boat.
Since the beginning of 2015, an astounding 79,338 migrants have arrived by sea, 60 percent of whom are Syrian. Slightly more migrants have transited to Greece than to Italy, a reversal from 2014, when Italy received 170,100 migrants and Greece only 34,442 total, according to estimates from the International Organization for Migration. These migrants pay traffickers exorbitant fees and risk their lives on dangerous journeys. Once arrived, they find the small communities on Greece’s many islands totally overwhelmed and unable to help. Most try to move northwards, to states like Hungary, via the Balkans.