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In The News

Local and international news on refugee and asylum issues

MYTH: They don’t need to come here and we don’t have any responsibility for them

 

 WRONG! The two largest groups of refugees in the world are from Iraq and Afghanistan. Both these countries are suffer problems that stem from the wars being waged there that Britain has direct responsibility for.

 

FACT: In 2009 the largest groups of asylum seekers in the UK came from Afghanistan, in that year 3,500 Afghanis made asylum claims in the UK. (UNHCR 23 March 2010 ‘Asylum Levels and Trends in Industialized Countries 2009)

FACT: Britain only takes a tiny, tiny number of refugees out of the 15.2 million refugees in the world. In 2008 there were only 640 officially registered refugees allowed into the UK under the Gateway Protection Programme by which refugees registered by the United Nations are allowed to live in Britain. In 2007 only 465 refugees were allowed in, 355 in 2006, 70 in 2005 and 150 in 2004. The Gateway Protection Programme is the only way people registered as refugees can come into the UK. (Home Office Statistical Bulletin August 2009 ‘Control of Immigration Statistics UK 2008)’

For more facts about asylum, click here: Asylum Myths 2010.

“ASYLUM HAS BECOME A DIRTY WORD”

Glaswegians are more hostile towards asylum seekers than 25 years ago.  Read more here

ASSIGNMENT: UNLAWFUL DETENTION

BBC World service documentary on the appalling treatment of asylum seekers in the UK.  Click here.  For more from the BBC, the Panorama series “Die Trying“; is about African migrants, some of whom are seeking asylum, risking their lives to flee toEurope. 

REPORT EXPLODES ASYLUM MYTHS

A new report shows that two-thirds of Asylum Seekers did not choose to come to the UK, and did not know they would receive financial support from the UK government, and would not be allowed to work, challenging the common perception that people choose to come to Britain because it’s a soft touch.  For the full report, click here: “Chance or Choice?”

CHILD DETENTION IN THE UK

“I’d let the police lock me up if I had done something wrong, but I didn’t do anything wrong, so why is this happening to me?” Nardin, aged 10. 

“… every single one of the children seen in Yarl’s Wood by a team of pediatricians and psychologists displayed some signs of distress and 73 per cent of children they examined had developed clinically significant emotional and behavioural problems since being detained. None had previously had such problems.”

Case study by the Independent’s Paul Vallely on a family detained at Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre. Read here, or if you’re a student, you can access the study, published in the journal Child Abuse & Neglect, here.

NUMBER OF CONGOLESE REFUGEES IN REPUBLIC OF CONGO REACHES 100,000

More than 100,000 Congolese refugees have now crossed the Oubangui River and found refugee in the Republic of the Congo since inter-ethnic violence erupted in Equateur province late last year. Read more here.

CONCERN OVER DEPORTATION OF HMONG REFUGEES

Thailand has begun deporting around 4,500 refugees from camps where they have been living for 30 years.  The UNHCR fears that the ethnic Lao Hmong will face  persecution, because of their involvement with the conflict in Laos in the 60’s and 70’s.  Read more here and here, and watch a short clip here.

NO CELEBRATION AS UNRWA TURNS 60

The UN agency responsible for Palestinian refugees commemorated its 60th anniversary in december, and amid continuing controversy over Israeli settlements.  Read more here.

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