By Tom HarkinIt is a question that has become increasingly important as the refugee crisis has dragged on, and the number of arrivals has soared.
On Thursday, the EU’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, told parliament that she believed it would be a mistake to treat asylum seekers as a “humanitarian issue”.
But many European leaders believe it would make a lot of sense for the bloc to consider the issue in more nuanced terms.
In fact, in her speech to the European Parliament, Mogherin also made the case that “humanity has the right to exist in Europe”, and that “a fair share of the refugees should be welcomed and protected”.
“We must be more sensitive to the humanity of the human beings, the migrants and refugees who seek to enter our countries,” she said.
But there is an increasing number of people in Europe who believe that the European Union has taken an anti-humanitarian stance.
And the answer is not so simple.
“This is a new, but very serious, debate,” said Rami Khouri, an expert on refugee and migration policy at the University of Pennsylvania.
“It’s the new question of when do we start to ask questions about the fundamental values of our societies, especially if they’re being attacked and attacked in such a manner?”
Mr Khouri said that he believed it was important to ask whether the EU is still upholding the principles of the European Charter of Fundamental Rights.
“Is it true that we should allow ourselves to be judged on our values or on what we think is right?”
The question is whether we should be judging people on what they do, on what their attitudes towards other people, towards their rights, are, or what their intentions are.
“And he said that it was possible to make a case that the EU has taken a pro-human rights stance, and that this was an important step in helping refugees.”
I think there are people who believe in human rights, and believe in freedom of speech and expression, and freedom of the press, and these are all principles that I think are important,” Mr Khouri told the ABC.”
But there are also those who believe we should respect the rights of other people as well.
“What does the future hold for asylum seekers?
There are currently more than 300,000 refugees and migrants living in Italy, Greece and Turkey.
They often arrive in boats, often at sea, and some, like the one that sank off the Italian island of Lampedusa in January, have drowned.
A new wave of asylum seekers have entered Europe from Africa and the Middle East since January, with more than 5,000 migrants and asylum seekers making the perilous crossing in March alone.
In Europe, many people are worried that the crisis is only getting worse.
Some are questioning the EU refugee policies, including the refugee resettlement plan in the EU, and argue that the refugees are being forced to flee their countries in search of work.”
There is a perception that the asylum seekers are not being welcomed because they are not seeking jobs in the European economy,” said Mr Khuri.
But Mr Khudier said that in order for Europe to be considered a place for refugees, there needs to be a strong social cohesion.”
If you look at the situation in other parts of the world, they are actually better than the EU.
They have higher standards of living, and they have a much better environment,” he said.”
You can’t just turn a blind eye to that and say, well, well that’s just the EU,” he added.
Topics:refugees,human-interest,world-politics,european-union,europa,europes-crisis-2010,eurozone,human,europonia-5,albania,francis-brazil,australiaMore stories from Australia