Arberi

Albania third, Kosovo fourth for mass removal of children in Europe

Albania ranks second in terms of asylum applications in EU countries in relation to the population, leaving behind only Syria, while third in terms of the number of children who applied for asylum in 2020, with more than 2 cases. Kosovo ranks fourth after Albania, Turkey and Russia for mass removal of children, who receive a residence permit for family reasons in one of the EU countries

Albania ranks second in terms of asylum applications in EU countries in relation to the population, leaving behind only Syria. While this country has become the host of Afghan refugees, where 607 Afghans have arrived so far, while another 3400 are expected to be accommodated, where they will stay in this country for a period of 1 year.

Despite the fact that Afghans are coming to Albania, the Albanians seem not to have given up their desire to leave the country even in the first six months of this year, despite the fact that the number of those leaving has fallen slightly due to the pandemic.

According to the data of the European Asylum Office from January to June of this year, the number of applications from Albanian citizens exceeded more than 2919 people, while only 63 people managed to get refugee status. Of them, 1978 are applications for the first time, while the rest are repeated cases. France continues to remain the most preferred country for Albanians to seek asylum, where about 2 applications or 39% of the total were made.

Despite requests for asylum from Albanian applicants, rejections continue to be high, since in the months of January-June, 3 thousand negative responses were returned, while only 63 people managed to secure refugee status.

Another worrying statistic, according to the European Asylum Office, is about 19 applications still left unexamined and without any response from the respective countries.

During 2020, Eurostat reported earlier that there were over 5 requests for asylum for the first time from Albanian citizens in the countries of the European Union and in Switzerland. The lowest number results in the months of March and April, which coincides with the time when Albania was in quarantine, but the flow increased from June onwards.

Meanwhile, the number of children who applied for asylum in 2020 remains high, with more than 2 thousand cases. With these figures, Albania ranks third, leaving behind only Turkey and Russia, which have a much higher population than Albania.

Meanwhile, Kosovo also ranks fourth after Russia for mass removal of children who receive residence permits for family reasons in one of the EU countries. So, the two Albanian states, Albania and Kosovo, are part of the quartet of states for granting residence permits for children under 15 years old, in one of the states of the European Union.

According to EUROSTAT figures, in the first place in Europe is Ukraine, with 21%, Albania with 19%, the third is Russia with 12% and the fourth is Kosovo with 10%. 12200 children from Albania and 6400 children from Kosovo are a shocking indicator for any country, but especially for the two Albanian-speaking and small countries of the same nation. This erosion risks creating a vacuum that will bring considerable consequences for both countries.

Lack of trust, misgovernance, corruption, quality of education, disrespect of merit, health system, are some of the reasons that force young people, future professionals, the main pillar of development, to leave the country.

Albania is aging at an alarming rate, as the youngest and most vital part of society is looking for more and more opportunities to leave and find a chance to build a life and a future in Europe.

But the latest EUROSTAT results show that Kosovo is also continuing the same path as its compatriots. Of the 64 residence permits for the first time, for family reasons, for children under 15 years of age, that the countries of the European Union have given to the countries of Europe that are not part of the EU, 19% of them, or about 12.2, were for Albanian citizens, while 10% of them, or 6400 people, are from Kosovo