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date: 24 September 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses the rise and fall of the West Balkan corridor that made it possible, albeit only briefly, for a large influx of non-European refugees and migrants to enter Western Europe in 2015 and 2016 in what has frequently been labeled a “refugee crisis.” The focus is on the nexus of local authorities’ responses in southeastern European countries, the local public’s constructions of the crisis, and the roles of individual countries in managing transit migration. It suggests that these responses and constructions should be linked to the prevailing local political and socioeconomic factors and the larger European political structures. Authorities of southeastern European countries seemed more concerned with avoiding becoming migrant hotspots than providing refugees with access to protection systems and integration into local communities.

Keywords: refugees, refugee crisis, migrants, migration policies, transit countries, West-Balkan corridor

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