Conflicts in Eastern Europe: Exodus from Ukraine and Russia
Besides forced internal and external displacements by the Russian annexation of Crimea and conflicts in eastern provinces, Ukraine recently saw outflows of people eager to avoid military conscription, alongside a rise in skilled and student migration and asylum-seeking. Ukraine finally also secured visa-free travel facility to the EU. Despite multiple constraints—[continuing corruption, internal political tension, devastations in the conflict-ridden Donetsk region, and internal displacement-related strain on local communities]—Ukraine was showing fledging signs of economic recovery. The decline in the Russian economy has slowed down Ukrainian migration to that country, lowering remittance inflows in 2015. Overall, the emigration pressure, including the flight of educated and innovative Russians, is rising. For both Russia and Ukraine, the future of migration will be shaped by the vagaries of the geopolitical game between the EU and Russia, with new US administration playing a key role in it.