Unconditional Sympathy for Muslim Syrian Refugees — But Not African Christians?
Posted by addisethiopia on June 1, 2016
Last September, the world reacted with outrage at photos of a drowned refugee boy, 3-year-old Alan Kurdi, who was found dead on a beach in Turkey. Western leaders reacted with shock and solemnity a day after and the image captured international headlines.
The photos of the child went viral and had enormous impact. After they appeared, for example, the Canadian government removed some of the legal obstacles that Syrian asylum seekers coming to the country had faced.
Politicians in Western Europe mourned young Kurdi’s death.
“He had a name: Alyan Kurdi. Urgent action required — a Europe-wide mobilization is urgent,” French Prime Minister Manuel Valls wrote in a tweet that included the now-famous photo of a Turkish gendarme lifting the toddler’s corpse.
Valls’s boss, President François Hollande, appeared at a news conference in Paris alongside Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny, who made this impassioned statement:
“Is there anybody on the planet who could not be moved by what they saw in the papers — anybody with a sense of humanity — who saw the body of a young boy washed up on a beach like driftwood. This is a human catastrophe”
British PM, David Cameron said that, “as a father, I felt deeply moved” by the image.”Britain is a moral nation, and we will fulfill our moral responsibilities,”
Elsewhere, the photo was credited for shifting public opinion in favor of Middle Eastern refugees, at a time when thousands of refugees from Syria were being welcomed as they arrived in Europe.
What about now? Where is the urgent attention? The needed compassion? No word from the EU, not a single statement from David Cameron, Angela Merkel and co. Why? Because, it’s obvious that these are Africans, probably Eritreans / Ethiopians and Christians.
The death of these refugees is being tolerated among the psychopathic evil rulers of this world who don’t care a bit about the lives of Africans, and who intend to scare off other Africans, other Christians who might come after them. Look how everything is hypocritical and diabolic; even the Cincinnati Zoo Gorilla & The Hollywood Circus ape man aka Johnny Depp, or the vanished EgyptAir flight MS804 got more attention, emotion and compassion than the thousands of human souls who are buried inside the Mediterranean cemetery. Wicked Europeans!
Breitbart wrote this in September:
„David Cameron has just bumped up the number of Syrian refugees Britain is going to accept from 4,000 to 20,000. Many other European countries are being bullied by Germany into doing likewise. The media narrative – promulgated by organisations like the BBC and the talking heads it chooses to sound off on this issue – is that this is no more than our “moral duty”. But it has been many decades since any EU nation bore any responsibility for what’s going on in Syria. Indeed, it’s one of the very few places in the Middle East where, conspicuously, nay miraculously, we haven’t intervened.
Is the rule, now, that we have to feel bad not just about the countries (Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc) where our meddling has made things worse – but also that we should feel personally responsible for those countries (Syria, etc) where we have made no difference?
And if this “moral duty” to save refugees extends to the whole world how come it didn’t apply when in Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo when babies were having their heads bashed against trees and pregnant mothers were being eviscerated with machetes? Or is that black people are just too much trouble?„
No Place Like Home For The “Go-Home Blacks”
MAY 11, 2016 by Daniel Tseghay and Kibra Yohannes
When an African is forced to leave home – from Somalia, Nigeria, Eritrea or any other country where their lives may be endangered – they know the risks. They know they may find themselves trapped in a refugee camp, waiting often for years to find permanent residence. They know they face a minimum of a month-long trip across the Sahara, called “bahr bila ma” (the sea without water), before reaching the Mediterranean. They know they may get lost in this desert, or run out of water and be forced to drink Benzene. They know they may be held for ransom, and tortured by the smugglers hired, supposedly, to escort them to safety.
If they make it to countries with ports, like Morocco, Algeria or Libya, many live in forest encampments, working multiple jobs to fund the trip across the sea before being extorted again. And once they arrive in Europe, if they haven’t perished at sea, they’re often branded mere economic migrants and are refused asylum before being deported back to the place they fled. Desperate, many will take the trip again across the Mediterranean. And many more follow them.
(My Note: The snapshot was taken from this „Daily Mail„ story, published on 27 May 2016.)
A recent report reveals there’s been an 80% increase in the number of refugees arriving in Italy compared to the first three months of 2015, with Nigerians, Gambians and Senegalese making up the largest numbers of asylum seekers.
The experience of the typical African refugee is one of rejection, inevitable denials of asylum, and being confronted by persistent anti-African sentiment. Despite this, and the fact that Eritrea, Nigeria, Somalia, Sudan, Gambia and Mali are among the top 10 countries that people are fleeing, Africans are still largely erased from the discussion around the refugee crisis. Instead they pad the ballooning numbers of victims and receive little support in return.
This kind of erasure is not limited to countries in western Europe, where many African refugees first land. We’re seeing similar patterns here in Canada. In late March, when the new federal government revealed its budget, it included a commitment of $245-million to resettle 10,000 Syrian refugees, which is in addition to the 25,000 it had already fast-tracked. We support this action and many other Africans do as well, but something’s wrong with this picture.
Many will say that Syria produces the largest number of refugees and so, they deserve preference. It’s certainly true that Syria ranks as the most affected, but, while we remain in solidarity with all displaced people, we shouldn’t practice a first-past-the-post humanitarianism. Africans are a part of this crisis and if the federal government will make commitments to some it should make them to all.
If you want to privately sponsor a refugee in Canada, there are currently no limits for Syrians. This is also commendable, but Africans face the detrimental effects of caps on private sponsorships and incredibly long delays (often years) in the processing of their applications. Not only have applications of specifically African refugees been put on hold, but also some refugee offices such as the Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto have begun turning away new applications submitted on behalf of African refugees. There are reports of families separated, with children waiting for years in refugee camps while their parents are settled in Canada. The longest delays are for the 18 African countries covered by the Nairobi visa office. Most privately sponsored refugees through that office wait more than three years, and, according to the Canadian Council for Refugees, “rather than increasing the numbers of African refugees to be admitted, the Canadian government has asked private sponsors to submit fewer applications at the Nairobi office.”
Canada’s response to refugees has become less global, neutral, and principled and more targeted. It’s within this selection process that African refugees are systematically excluded. It leaves many marginalized populations outside of the dialogue, further dehumanizing them. If and when these refugees finally reach Canada, they’re usually offered loans to help cover the costs of transportation fees, medical services, and sometimes even first month’s rent. These loans, which are typically paid with interest, are often as high as $10,000. Paying them back means working longer hours and postponing their education in a new country. In contrast, Syrian refugees arriving in Canada after November 4 don’t have to pay back their loans.
Last year, when those images of toddler Aylan Kurdi made it to the front pages of the world’s papers, we were as moved as anybody. And when rallies in support of refugees across the globe were organized, we supported and marched as well. But the truth is that some of us have seen images of washed up African toddlers for years. For some of us, Kurdi was one of many. For some of us, the rousing call from governments and settlement organizations and community groups of “refugees welcome”, was welcome but surprising, as there has been no such commotion when Africans drowned. Indeed, we wonder, with anger and disappointment, why the settler-colonial, Canadian state and our own allies remain silent as Africans continue to die; why we have been rendered what the poet Warsan Shire calls “the go home blacks.”