“Recent Migration Types – Historical Context and Causes” 7/10/2019

The first session of the Educational Seminar “European Management of Migration in the Eastern Mediterranean: The EU, Greece and Turkey” titled “Recent Migration Types – Historical Context and Causes” was successfully help on October 7, 2019. Coordinator of the first seminar was Professor Yannis Valinakis, President of the European Center of Excellence Jean Monnet. Speakers were Mrs Alexandra Tragaki, Associate Professor at Harokopio University, Mr Angelos, Tramountanis, Researcher at the National Center of Social Research, Mr Kostas Vlachopoulos, Researcher at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy, and Mr Erasmia Roumana UNHCR representative.

The session began with the presentation of Ms Tragaki, who approached the demographic aspect of the phenomenon. Starting with the importance of the issue of migration as a regulator in the demographic composition of the European population, she analyzed in detail the concepts of migration. Through various theories that have been supported throughout the years, Ms Tragaki demonstrated the complexity of the causes that drive migration, and her analysis was completed by presenting key demographics, according to the latest UN data available on countries of origin and place of residence. 

The second speaker, Mr. Tramountanis focused on the historical evolution of the issue of migration, since the emergence of slavery, as one of the first forms of forced displacement. Mr. Tramountanis also presented the political and economic context, as well as the different reasons that have influenced migration flows.

Mr. Vlahopoulos, a researcher who has dealt with the presentation of immigration in Greece since the early decades of the 20th century proceeded with his presentation provided particular statistics on the numbers of legal and irregular migrants by period, their countries of origin and their way of entry into the country, focusing on the recent past, from 1990 onwards, with particular emphasis on 2015, a landmark year for Greece, since then the number of people crossing the borders has increased by 20 times.

The seminar concluded with the presentation of Ms. Rοumana. The speaker focused on the role of the UNHCR, which began its course by ensuring the implementation of the 1951 Geneva Convention on the Refugee Status. She clarified the definition of refugees and economic migrants, and concluded with the presentation of the Global Compact on Refugees.

The session ended with participants discussing with the speakers and having the opportunity to ask for clarifications, express concerns and raise questions on the topic. The seminar was hosted at the European Public Law Agency (EPLO) conference hall in Plaka, Athens.

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