Sunday, 29 December 2013
Refugees need practical help, not gestures
It struck me as odd that Nigel Farage was quite ready to open British doors to 2 million refugees from Syria even though he has objected to "millions" of Bulgarian and Romanian fellow-citizens of the EU entering the country. His media release would be more convincing if he had previously spoken out against the consistent discrimination against refugees not only by this government but the previous one. Crucially, there is rarely any safe place to go for individuals facing extreme prejudice in their country of origin. This is not the case with the Syrian refugees, who are, I suggest, best helped in the camps established just outside the Syrian border. They are as safe here as in the UK and do not have to make major adjustments to their life-style. Nor will they be any less liable to sexual exploitation, sadly, if our own recent history is anything to go by, nor to racial prejudice which increases in proportion to the size of an incoming identifiable community.