The IEPN meeting came as the EU has been struggling to find an answer to the migration crisis. The ongoing migrant crisis began in 2015, when a rising number of migrants made the journey to the EU, traveling across the Mediterranean Sea or through Southeast Europe, to seek asylum, mainly due to the conflicts in Syria, Iraq
and Afghanistan. In 2015 more than 3,770 people drowned or went missing while crossing the Mediterranean to Greece or Italy. Survivors often report violence and abuse by people traffickers, who charge thousands of dollars per person for their services. As European countries struggle with the mass movement of people, some have tightened border controls. This has left tens of thousands of migrants stranded in Greece, raising fears of a humanitarian crisis. The EU, with 28 member states, each with their own government, police force and judiciary system, finds it difficult to form a consensus regarding the steps to be taken to deal with the crisis.