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Med refugee crisis exposes the West

Published 28/04/2015

I don't know which is more depressing in the hostile reaction to the boat people from Libya - the basic lack of compassion and humanity of the send 'em all back/not our problem brigade, or European politicians' ignorance, or shameful denial of the chaos and violence in that country.

The international community solved the problem of the Vietnamese boat people by agreeing on swift resettlement in other Asian countries followed by more permanent resettlement in the US and Europe.

Ironically, the European countries least willing to take in the boat people are those making the most negative noise.

In fact, countries including Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq have taken in over 90% of more than three million Syrian refugees, while African countries have taken in both refugees and economic migrants: Tunisia has camps, South Africa has some three million migrants. Britain, on the other hand, has accepted 143 Syrians and France 500.

ROD CHAPMAN

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Belfast Telegraph

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