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The influx of migrants and asylum seekers to Europe in recent years has shown the need for a fairer, more effective European asylum policy. Check out our infographic for more.

07_Migration: Afghans brave rough seas to cross from Turkey to the Lesvos, Greece ©UNHCR/Achilleas Zavallis        

Migration represents challenges and opportunities for Europe. Learn how the EU deals with refugee movements and asylum.

06_Migration: Refugees arrive on the shores of the island of Lesbos after crossing the Aegean sea from Turkey ©UNHCR/Achilleas Zavallis        

In recent years, Europe has had to respond to the most serious migratory challenge since the end of World War II. Read on to learn more.

 Greece's Hellenic Coast Guard approaches a boat containing 43 Syrian refugees in the Mediterranean sea, off the coast of Lesbos, Greece.        

The migration crisis has exposed shortcomings in Europe’s asylum system, compelling the EU into action. Learn about Parliament’s response to the crisis.

03_Migration: Najah, a 22-year-old refugee from Syria, attends an English course organised and supported by the UNHCR in Leros, Greece, with her 11-month-old daughter Amenah. © UNHCR/Achilleas Zavallis        

In 2016 1.2 million people applied for asylum in the EU. Learn more about the European Parliament’s role in the integration of refugees.



MEPs Kashetu Kyenge and Roberta Metsola, co-authors of a broad migration report, address concerns over sending refugees back to Turkey and other points.

Is it time for a new approach on migration? Italian S&D member Kashetu Kyenge and Maltese EPP member Roberta Metsola are calling for a comprehensive strategy including having binding targets for resettlement in each member state. MEPs debate and vote on their report on Tuesday 12 April from 8.30 CET. The two MEPs also answered questions about migration posed by our fans on Facebook. Watch the video to see what they had to say on issues such as the refugee crisis and the EU-Turkey agreement.

A mother and her baby rescued after crossing the sea in search of a safe life ©UNHCR/Achilleas Zavallis        

EU border force Frontex, estimates that the number of people landing on Europe's shores fell by two-thirds in 2016. A drop in arrivals on Greece’s islands contrasts however with record numbers of migrants reaching Italy. With over 5,000 people killed or missing, the UN reports that 2016 was the deadliest year ever for migrants crossing the Mediterranean. In meetings with Commission, Council and UNHCR representatives on 12 January, civil liberties committee MEPs shared their views on the crisis.


Award-winning French photojournalist Marie Dorigny travelled to Greece, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Germany from December 2015 to January 2016 at the request of the EP seeking to capture on film the plight of women refugees ahead of this year's International Women's Day. © Marie Dorigny / European Union 2015        
Press Releases 

Press Releases 

A reform of EU migration and asylum policies and procedures needs to include gender-sensitive measures to ensure the safety of women seeking asylum, many of whom travel with young children and other dependents, say MEPs in a resolution voted on Tuesday.


A torn Syrian passport seen on the Greek side of the border with the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, where more than 12000 refugees, mainly from Iraq and Syria, are waiting to cross and continue their journey towards Western Europe.  © UNHCR/Achilleas Zavallis        

This week's EU-Turkey summit which aimed to reach a comprehensive deal on tackling the refugee crisis was debated by MEPs on Wednesday morning. During the keynote debate MEPs stressed that international asylum rules must be respected and also voiced their expectations for next week's EU summit. Some 132,000 people entered Europe by sea in the first two months of this year.

Image of a Syrian refugee camp        

Turkey plays a crucial role in the refugee crisis: not only is it hosting more than 2.5 million Syrian refugees but also most of the one million migrants who reached the EU last year passed through the country. MEPs have called on EU countries to deliver on the €3 billion refugee facility for Turkey. As the EU searches for the best approach to tackle the crisis, two delegations from the civil liberties and budgets committees travel to Turkey this week to assess the situation on the ground.

Parliament President Schulz on Turkey's request for an additional €3 billion in aid and on linking the refugee crisis to the country's EU accession talks.

“For the benefit of refugees we need to cooperate with Turkey,” EP President Martin Schulz said following a meeting with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu on Monday 7 March. They discussed the refugee crisis, border controls, visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens as well as press freedom in Turkey, ahead of a meeting with the EU heads of state and thwe Turkish government in Brussels to discuss measures to stem the flow of migrants.


Infrared image of vessel on surveillance eqquipment © European Union 2015 - Frontex        

The EU military operation against people smugglers in the Mediterranean is about to enter its next phase. After gathering intelligence and setting up the structure, the operation will now focus on arresting traffickers and disabling smugglers vessel. The details of the operation were discussed by MEPs during a meeting of the security and defence subcommittee on 22 September.

EP President Martin Schulz and French President François Hollande        

A common response to the current refugee crisis is needed, said Martin Schulz, president of the European Parliament, during a meeting today with French President François Hollande in Paris. "We should welcome refugees," Schulz stressed ahead of the extraordinary European Council on the refugee crisis taking place in Brussels on Wednesday.