Saturday, April 18, 2015

U.N. wants western nations to give asylum and support to Syrian refugees, raising "policy" questions

Somini Sengupta has a front page story in the Saturday New York Times, “Tides of refugees, but the West isn’t welcoming” in print, “U.N. calls on western nations to shelter Syrian refugees”, link here.  The Pope is also reported to have made similar comments. The issue had been introduced here March 20, 2015. 
The article reports that the U.S. would be concerned about the possibility of terrorists posing as refugees. But the US may accept about 2000 this year, compared to a total of 700 so far.  There are some Syrian communities scattered around the country that might “want” to host them, as has been reported before.  But asking American private citizens to take in or sponsor refugees would be unprecedented in recent times, although this situation happened in 1980 with Cuban refugees.
A similar issue can exist with asylum from anti-gay countries, including Russia now.  

Update: May 2, 2015

Of course, the Tsarnaev case reminds one of an implicit danger in taking in asylees.  That will be covered in more detail later.  

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