A summary of what think-tanks sense what trends we can expect regarding displaced people.
1 The number of displaced people will increase dramatically in the following years due to:
- Syrian & Middle East conflict will intensify due to the Sunni and Shia interventions in the countries of conflict.
- Radicals are gaining strengths in Sub-Saharan (north, central, western and eastern) African countries and are gaining advanced intelligence & equipment from other radical groups.
- The unbearable and unsustainable burden of refugees on countries such as Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey (and many more poor countries that have not the resources) but also on those countries that provide currently passage (the EU is expected to stop refugees before the EU border therefore larger concentrations is expected in those countries).
- Guerrilla and cross-border raids by radicals in the Sahel countries.
- The expected liaison between radical movements across different countries and regions.
- The dramatic affect of the desertification combined with the global warming effects.
- Less aid per capita as the number of people in need rise sharply.
- The word is out that Germany and other European countries have opened their doors to refugees (the message will be used by smugglers to lure new customers).
For info: The number of displaced people is estimated by the UN to be almost at 60 million (Juli 2015).
2. Security threats will likely to rise
• Struggle for supremacy between radical groups such as IS, Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, Jihadists, .. These organisations will show their capacity to cause havoc in the lands of the infidels.
• Disruptive tactics of radicals in many middle east countries.
• Rejected refugees become disgruntled and therefore hostile to the West. They will be easy prey for radicals terrorist actions.
• The social media allows radical groups to recruit free and widely. Spreading fear and anxiety has never been easier.
Radicals will re-attempt to conquer regions in Sub-sahara and will target western symbols (embassies, peace keeping forces, western business people, NGOs, christians, ..)
3. The number and size of refugee camps (both for internal displaced people as for international refugees) will grow. The average lifespan refugees (currently 12 years) spend in camps will increase drastically. Camps are more and more the breeding place for new radical recruits.
• The EU policy (likely to be imposed) will gradually seal off their outer borders. This will create unsustainable situations for those countries that shore the Mediterranean sea where most refugees survive in the main cities. It is likely that new camps will be erected to manage the concentration of refugees.
• Africa loses annually 2 to 3% of its fertile land to desertification and deforestation. Human overpopulation in Africa and some Middle east & Asian countries exceeds the carrying capacity of the region and depletes the non-renewable resources. Migration is the only viable alternative.
• Camps will be used for the repatriation of many rejected economical (incl. Health & environmental) refugees because they have fled land that can not be cultivated anymore (soil erosion, impact global climate changes) and available fertile land elsewhere is not available anymore.
It is a tall order to reduce the influence of the radicals and to ensure that fewer youngsters join the ranks of radical groups. Recently, the French army intervened military and with success in Mali to halt the jihadists. But, few jihadists where defeated. The majority fled into neighbouring countries and are now back on the Mali border with more experience and with extra recruits. As a result, neighbouring countries of Mali now witness the rise of radicals too.
The leading players (including African Union and Arab League) need to draft a joint-master plan and the commitment to invest in those countries that are, or will likely to be destabilised by radicals. Without prospect for young people, the smouldering grass could ignite easily again in many countries. The result will be even more refugees flocking to Europe.
It’s a rather bleak outlook but we can master many of these challenges if we join forces and invest wisely to tackle the root causes of these issues. Let’s start creating a vision and a master plan.
Personal reflection only. Bart