The European Union will meet in an emergency session today to discuss the current migrant problem that has cost the lives of many refugees from North Africa. The meeting was needed as a result of the tragic sinking of a refugee ferry which has claimed close to 900 refugee lives. So far less than 100 refugees have been rescued alive and a joint effort by all European Union countries bordering the Mediterranean basin continues to search for additional victims and survivors. The ferry sinking which occurred earlier this week has simply highlighted a larger problem with a constant flight of migrants trying to escape war, famine and poverty for the possibility of a better life. Thousands knowingly risk their lives to pay for passage across the Mediterranean sea and it is reported that at least 30,000 die each year attempting to seek passage to any european country. EU Convenes Emergency Meeting to Aid Migrants
The European Union will be looking at a broad list of issues and options to address the problem. The matter is not one simply of providing a coordinated search and rescue effort as well as emergency medical services. Many of the refugees end up actually paying their own way into human trafficking situations. In extreme situations some refugees end up in the drug trade or caught in a prostitution ring. EU officials know that the long term solutions involve aiding the countries from which the migrants are traveling from. Dan Newlin suggests that the first priority will be to stem the flow of migrants and to prosecute those that seek to profit from this form of human trafficking.