16/09/2015 3:20 AM AEST | Updated 04/01/2017 8:30 AM AEDT

How Europe's Tragic Refugee And Migrant Crisis Got So Dire

The crisis didn't come out of nowhere.

Children walk at the Ritsona refugee camp, north of Athens, on December 21, 2016.

Hundreds of thousands of people in search of safety and better opportunity have risked their lives in the past year to reach Europe from war-torn and poverty-stricken countries. 

Europe is struggling to come up with a response for the thousands at their doors.  On Monday, European Union member states agreed, "in principle," to resettle 160,000 refugees, but failed to reach a consensus on which countries would take them in. 

The current crisis didn't come out of nowhere. Take a look at some of the major events of the past year to see how the situation's evolved.

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