Refugees

Germany Angela Merkel and Migrants News

Angela Merkel was expecting a friendly chat with business women when she visited Dresden earlier this month. Instead, far-right protesters jeered the German Chancellor’s arrival. Hundreds of demonstrators from the Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West, a group known as Pegida, gathered in the historic city to voice their anger at Merkel and her decision to welcome over a million refugees since 2015. One threw a bottle at a journalist, another gave a Nazi salute, while a third denied the Holocaust, a criminal offense in Germany. A poster bearing Merkel’s image read: Terrorists Welcome. Despite nearly a decade of consistent economic growth, there’s growing fatigue with Merkel and the ruling parties, particularly in the former communist East, which has undergone decades of social and economic change. The region that saw massive right-wing protests last year is now back in focus as voters in three states go to the polls this fall. In two of them — Saxony and Brandenburg — Merkel’s Christian Democrats and their junior partner, the Social Democrats, may lose for the first time since reunification in 1990, to the upstart Alternative for Germany, or AfD. That could not only implode her fragile coalition but upend a political landscape dominated by two parties since World War II. “That is the writing on the wall for the traditional parties,” Josef Janning, head of the Berlin office of the European Council on Foreign Relations, said in an interview. “This will shake up the system.” Merkel’s coalition is alreadyContinue reading

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African Migrants - Refugees - Migrant from Africa to Europe

They are trapped in squalid detention centers on Libya’s front lines. They wash up on the banks of the Rio Grande. They sink without a trace — in the Mediterranean, in the Pacific or in waterways they can’t even name. A handful fall out of airplanes’ landing gear. As their choices narrow on land and at sea, migrants are often seen as a political headache in the countries they hope to reach and ignored in the countries they flee. Most live in limbo, but recent tragedies have focused attention on the risks they face and the political constraints at the root of them. A record 71 million people were forcibly displaced around the world in 2018, according to a report last month by the U.N. refugee agency, in places as diverse as Turkey, Uganda, Bangladesh and Peru. Many are still on the move in 2019, or trapped like thousands in detention in Libya, where an airstrike on Tuesday killed at least 44 migrants and refugees locked away in the Tripoli suburb of Tajoura. Most of those in Tajoura and other Libyan detention centers have been intercepted by the Libyan coast guard, which has become the go-to border force for the European Union, which can’t get 28 governments to agree about migration. Despite the rhetoric about migration crises in Europe and the U.S., the top three countries taking in refugees are Turkey, Pakistan and Uganda. Germany comes in a distant fifth. A 20-year-old who fled war in his homeland in sub-SaharanContinue reading

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Venezuelans Refugees - Venezuela News

The number of people seeking political asylum in the European Union is rising again, driven up by Latin American refugees, but flows are expected to remain well below the high levels seen during Europe’s 2015 migration crisis, a report said on Monday. In the first five months of this year, states of the European Free Trade Area (EFTA), which includes all the 28 EU countries, plus Norway, Switzerland, Iceland and Liechtenstein, registered more than 290,000 asylum applications, an increase by 11% compared to the same period in 2018, the EU agency for refugees, the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), said. The rise was partly caused by a surge of Venezuelans and other Latin American asylum seekers who are fleeing political and economic crises in their countries, EASO said. Venezuelans lodged some 18,400 asylum applications from January through May, roughly twice as many as during the same period in 2018, making them the nationality with the second highest number of applications in Europe after Syrians. Venezuela is experiencing an economic collapse, triggered by a prolonged political crisis, which has unleashed the biggest migratory crisis in recent South American history with some 3 million Venezuelans estimated to have fled the country in recent years. Most of them go to Venuezuela’s neighbouring countries. European countries recorded also a surge in the arrivals of Colombians, and more asylum applications from nationals of El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Peru, EASO said. This has caused a nearly 50% increase of applications in Spain last year whenContinue reading

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UNRWA - United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees

The head of the United Nations agency that has supported Palestinian refugees for seven decades hit back on Thursday at a U.S. proposal to have host countries take over the services it provides across the Middle East. The suggestion, from U.S. Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt at a U.N. Security Council meeting on Wednesday, that UNRWA should be effectively dismantled was the latest U.S. attack on an agency that began operations in 1950. Formerly UNRWA’s largest donor, the United States halted its funding to the agency in 2018, deeming its fiscal practices “irredeemably flawed” and stoking tensions between the Palestinians and U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration. “We need to engage with host governments to start a conversation about planning the transition of UNRWA services to host governments, or to other international or local non-governmental organizations, as appropriate,” Greenblatt said after the Security Council was briefed by UNRWA chief Pierre Krahenbuhl. Asked at a Gaza news conference on Thursday about Greenblatt’s remarks, Krahenbuhl said UNRWA’s mandate was a matter for the entire U.N. General Assembly to consider, not by “one or two individual member states”. “Therefore, Palestinian refugees should remember that the mandate is protected by the General Assembly, and of course we will engage with member states to ensure what we hope is a safe renewal of that mandate,” Krahenbuhl said. STRONG BACKING IN U.N. GENERAL ASSEMBLY UNRWA’s mission is due to come up for renewal later this year in the General Assembly, where support for the agency has beenContinue reading

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