As Europe faces what is possibly its greatest refugee crisis since World War II, the issue remains a faraway problem for Japan. But with the paltry number of refugees admitted into the country each year — a mere 11 in 2014 — some say there is plenty of room for Japan to play a much more expansive and important role.

Could the journey thousands of kilometers away to Japan be a realistic option for Syrians fleeing their war-torn nation?

On Thursday, the flood of refugees — many from conflict-hit Middle Eastern countries — continued to stream into Europe. In desperate bids to escape, many are gambling their lives on making the perilous journey across the Mediterranean.