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Monday 4 December 2023 Dublin: 4°C

The Explainer: Why are people risking their lives to get to Europe?

We look at the ‘push and pull’ factors and the deadly risks people are forced to take.

SO FAR IN 2019, more than 95,000 migrants and refugees have entered Europe via the main Mediterranean routes – countries like Italy, Greece, Malta and Spain.

They will usually have taken long, arduous and potentially dangerous journeys to get there. 

On 23 October, the bodies of 39 people were found in a lorry container in Essex. A criminal investigation into the deaths is ongoing. Days later, 12 men – 11 Syrians and a Sudanese man – were found alive in a refrigerated truck in Belgium transporting fruit and vegetables.

The number of migrants and refugees attempting to enter Europe is high but has reduced in recent years, down from a peak of over one million people in 2015. 

On this week’s podcast, we look at the migrant crisis, and at why people are risking their lives to get to Europe. We take in the push and pull factors such as conflict and economic instability, and also Europe’s response to the issue. 

Host Sinéad O’Carroll is joined by former Economics lecturer from TU Dublin, Sean Byrne, reporter Órla Ryan and Médecins Sans Frontières nurse Aoife Ní Mhurchú to discuss the issue.

The Explainer / SoundCloud

This episode was put together by presenter Sinéad O’Carroll, producer Aoife Barry, assistant producer and technical operator Nicky Ryan, and executive producer Christine Bohan. Reporter was Órla Ryan, guest was Sean Byrne. Design by Palash Somani.

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