European Union flag.

L'Europe confrontée à la réalité

BERLIN – Jusqu'à il y a quelques semaines, l'Europe pensait vivre dans une sorte de sanctuaire, isolée des conflits du monde actuel. Bien que terrifiée par les actualités et images de migrants morts en mer, l'Europe considérait encore comme lointaine la tragédie observée au sud de l'Italie, en Grèce et à Malte.

La violente guerre civile de Syrie, pays en proie aux destructions depuis des années, lui apparaissait encore plus éloignée. Rappelons que dans cette guerre, le président syrien Bachar el-Assad a usé de gaz de combat et autres bombes barils – truffés de clous et fragments métalliques – contre sa propre population d'insoumis. Ceux qui ont échappé aux troupes d'Assad se sont retrouvés confrontés à la terreur de l'État islamique. Plusieurs centaines de milliers d'entre eux y ont perdu la vie, et plusieurs millions de Syriens ont fui, vivant pour la plupart dans des camps de Jordanie, du Liban ou de Turquie depuis des années, dans des conditions effroyables ne présentant aucun espoir d'amélioration.

C'est ainsi qu'au cours de l'été, une fois évanouie la dernière lueur d'espoir de retour en Syrie, et face désormais à l'irréalisme d'une alternative à Assad et à l'État islamique, ces populations ont commencé à prendre la direction de l'Europe, qui semblait promettre un avenir de paix, de liberté et de sécurité. Ces réfugiés sont arrivés par la Turquie, la Grèce et les Balkans, ou via la Méditerranée après avoir fui un chaos similaire en Érythrée, en Libye, en Somalie ou au Soudan.

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