The Butterfly Effect: The Iraq War and Asylum Seeking in Sweden

Eger, Maureen. 2008. “The Butterfly Effect: The Iraq War and Asylum Seeking in Sweden.” WES Northwest: The Newsletter of the Center for West European Studies and the European Union Center of Excellence at University of Washington 15, 1: 8/11.

On the fifth year anniversary of the Iraq War, many have contemplated the consequences of the United States’ decision to invade Iraq and remove Saddam Hussein from power. Indeed, the many ways in which this war has affected social and political order in the Middle East, international security, world economies, and foreign relations have been the topics of both scientific inquiry and journalistic investigation. And, although recent analyses have focused on the relationship between the war and political schisms within the European Union as well as the future of EU-USA relations, relatively less attention has been paid to the effect of the war on the social structure and politics within European countries...In 2006, over 40% of all Iraqi applications for asylum in Europe went to Sweden, and according to Statistics Sweden, 91%, or approximately 9,500 Iraqis, received residence permits. This increased the number of Iraqis residing in Sweden to approximately 83,000. Then, in 2007, 18,000 Iraqis applied for asylum, and, according to the Swedish Migration Board, 93% were granted permits. Statistics Sweden puts the number of Iraqis currently living in Sweden at 97,513, which, for a country of only 9.1 million people, is no small thing...

Also printed in  EU@IU: Newsletter of the European Union Center of Excellence at Indiana University 2, 3: 1/6.


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