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27 May, 2024
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Cyprus implements ''Plan B'' to curb surge in Syrian refugees

Decision to suspend asylum applications signals strategic response to growing crisis


Cyprus has taken decisive action to manage the increasing flow of Syrian refugees seeking asylum, according to reliable sources. The decision to suspend the examination of political asylum applications by Syrian refugees is seen as part of a strategic "plan b" formulated by authorities to tackle the escalating crisis.

This move, deemed legitimate under EU law, aims to address the soaring influx until certain areas of Syria are designated as safe by the European Union.  Nicosia's proactive approach also involves coordinating with other member-states sharing Cyprus' stance on safe designations in Syria, and potentially leading to a conference to discuss the issue.

With Cyprus being the closest EU member-state to the Middle East, it has faced a significant surge in arrivals of Syrian refugees by boat from Lebanon, believed to host over 1.5 million Syrian refugees. The Interior Ministry's data indicates a notable increase in arrivals, particularly by sea, prompting authorities to take swift measures to manage the situation.

The recent spike in arrivals is attributed to various factors, including the escalating crisis between the Palestinian militant group Hamas and Israel. Nicosia's efforts aim to deter further influx by creating counter-incentives while remaining vigilant and adaptable to evolving circumstances. Additional measures may be implemented as the situation unfolds, guided by a thorough cost-benefit analysis.

[Information sourced from CNA]

Cyprus  |  Syria  |  migration  |  asylum

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