Cities with largest influx of migrants say they’ve suffered a huge drop in living standards, European Commission study finds

Migrants walk near Ayvacik, Turkey, before travelling to Greek island of Lesbos as they make their way into Europe. European cities in countries hardest hit by the migrant crisis say the arrival of foreigners has had a negative impact on their communities, according to a new survey

European cities in countries hardest hit by the migrant crisis say the arrival of foreigners has had a negative impact on their communities, according to a new survey.

A wide-ranging study by the European Commission in 83 cities analysed people’s quality of life by asking them to rate factors from education, housing, happiness and the impact of migration.

When asked whether foreigners have been well integrated, less than half of respondents agreed in 33 cities – around 40 per cent of the places surveyed.

The highest levels of discontent were found in Athens (76%), Greater Athens (75%), Malmo (65%), Roma (64%) and Istanbul (64%). +4   

Migrants walk near Ayvacik, Turkey, before travelling to Greek island of Lesbos as they make their way into Europe. European cities in countries hardest hit by the migrant crisis say the arrival of foreigners has had a negative impact on their communities, according to a new survey

When asked if the presence of foreigners was positive, Istanbul came lowest with 55% of respondents disagreeing. All six cities in Italy, one of the hardest hit by the migrant crisis, came fell in the lowest ranking

When asked if the presence of foreigners was positive, Istanbul came lowest with 55% of respondents disagreeing. All six cities in Italy, one of the hardest hit by the migrant crisis, came fell in the lowest ranking

Since the last survey in 2012, opinion dropped significantly in Turkey’s Istanbul (down 28% to 33%) and Ankara (down 16% to 46%), one of the countries experiencing a huge influx of migrants fleeing conflict in the Middle East.

In Sofia in Bulgaria, which has also struggled to cope with tens of thousands of refugees arriving on its shores, this view has fallen 18% to 31 per cent.

 

This negative view was also reflected in Italy, which like Greece has taken in huge numbers of asylum seekers from across the Mediterranean.

When asked if the presence of foreigners was positive, all six Italian cities were among the lowest ranking.

When asked if foreigners have been well integrated, less than half of respondents agreed in 33 cities – around 40 per cent of the places surveyed – with Athens, Istanbul, Rome and Berlin falling in the lowest ranking

When asked if foreigners have been well integrated, less than half of respondents agreed in 33 cities – around 40 per cent of the places surveyed – with Athens, Istanbul, Rome and Berlin falling in the lowest ranking

On this question, people have also become significantly more negative in Istanbul (down 25% to 43%) Ankara (down 20% to 45%) and Sofia (down 17% to 57%) over the last four years.

However, the study, which surveyed 500 people in each city between May and June last year, found that the presence of foreigners was generally viewed as positive.

In all but five of the cities surveyed, a majority of respondents agree that the presence of foreigners is good for their city.

In Germany, which has taken in more than one million migrants in the last year, opinion has increased in Berlin, up 10% to 40 per cent.

Since the last survey in 2012, opinion dropped significantly about whether foreigners were well integrated in Turkey's Istanbul (down 28% to 33%) and Ankara (down 16% to 46%), one of the countries experiencing a huge influx of migrants fleeing conflict in the Middle East. Rome and Sofia also came in the bottom four

Since the last survey in 2012, opinion dropped significantly about whether foreigners were well integrated in Turkey’s Istanbul (down 28% to 33%) and Ankara (down 16% to 46%), one of the countries experiencing a huge influx of migrants fleeing conflict in the Middle East. Rome and Sofia also came in the bottom four

It comes as it emerged Europe’s cross-border train services could be scrapped if the Schengen system collapses in the face of the migrant crisis, the head of Germany’s national railway has claimed.

Hungary’s foreign minister also warned that terror threats will increase and public safety will deteriorate unless the European Union builds a ‘strong southern defence line’ to stop the influx.

The borderless travel zone has come under increasing strain in recent months, with several countries imposing at least partial border checks in the wake of the migrant influx, as they are allowed to do temporarily.

It comes after EU leaders announced teams of border guards to be deployed in order to stop migrants leaving Greece for the rest of the EU, effectively cutting the country off from the rest of the continent.

The scheme – which effectively suspends Greece’s membership of the Schengen zone – was designed during an emergency meeting to finally halt the free flow of migrants arriving by boat into mainland Europe.

 

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