Press Review 11 July 2016

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Tags: Africa forced migration;refugees; asylum seekers;development;xenophobia immigration policy xenophobia

Image credit: bdlive

NATIONAL

South Africa: Court Setback for Immigrants – Cape Town Refugee Office May Stay Closed

allAfrica, 1 July 2016

On 24 June, the Cape Town High Court upheld a decision to keep the Cape Town Refugee Reception Office (CTRRO) closed. The Scalabrini Centre and Others had challenged the Director General of Home Affairs’ decision to keep the office closed after being ordered to re-examine the decision and to do further research. The Director General claims it is too difficult to procure sustainable space for the CTRRO. In all of its three former locations, neighbouring residents and businesses have complained that the high numbers of refugees make the office a public nuisance. The CTRRO has been ordered to vacate two of its three former premises.

Opinion: the link between public violence and xenophobia in South Africa

Eye Witness News, 4 July 2016

South African media recently published an unsettling interview with Mandla Matikinya, a branch leader of the African National Congress (ANC) Youth League. In it he advocated looting foreign-owned shops over schools and public buildings. This was in the wake of the violence that followed the governing ANC’s choice of a mayoral candidate for the Tshwane metropole. Over the past decade we have seen a strong connection between political protests and the looting of foreign-owned business. The question is: why? The simple answer is that local leaders need protests to maintain their power and legitimacy. And the protesters need to be fed. Looting is the way to fill their stomachs.

Home Affairs looking at refugees in a new light

IOL, 4 July 2016

Our most frequent visitors are from neighbours in Africa; our migration policies still favour former colonial powers; thousands try for refugee status here but few get it; and business migrants are increasingly coming from China. The Ministry of Home Affairs has just released the Green Paper on International Migration.

SA looks to clamp down on ‘economic migrants’

City Press, 4 July 2016

Green paper on proposed new policies aims to clamp down on ‘economic migrants’ seeking asylum to live and work in SA Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba’s long-promised clampdown on “economic migrants” is taking shape. A proposed new migration regime for South Africa would see asylum seekers lose their right to work, trade and study in the country. This is because people who do not qualify for refugee status use temporary asylum permits as “de facto work, business or study visas”. Instead, they will in future be confined to processing centres near the border, where “their basic needs will be catered for” while they are kept from “integrating into communities”.

REGIONAL

Uganda: South Sudan Refugees Sell Food Rations to Buy Soap, Salt, Clothes

allAfrica, 29 June 2016

It is a fairly-cloudy morning at Ayilo II refugee settlement in Adjumani district and Abil Deng Kur quietly steals out of her narrow mud-and-wattle conical hut. As she cleans her nose with her fingers, the 63-year-old South Sudanese refugee is filled with joy on seeing me. She runs towards me, hugs and shakes me as a sign of welcome. “You made it,” she says but then fails to remember my name. Before I say a word, Deng reminds me of my previous visit at the camp in 2015, when most refugees, including herself, were selling food rations to access private medical services. (I had promised to visit her again).

East Africa: Minister Calls for Skilling of South Sudan Refugees

allAfrica, 1 July 2016

Parents, NGOs have partnered to school South Sudanese refugee children. Now, inspired by the Skilling Uganda programme, a minister wants the refugee children to get technical training.

Sudan Hosts 360,000 Refugees and Asylum Seekers

allAfrica, 2 July 2016

World Refugee Day was marked on 20 June across the world, to highlight the courage and resilience of people forced to flee war or persecution. According to a report by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), 65.3 million people were displaced globally as of the end of 2015, compared to 59.5 million just twelve months earlier. This is the first time that the threshold of 60 million has been crossed and means that one in every 113 people globally is now either an asylum seeker, displaced or a refugee, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) in Sudan reported in its latest weekly bulletin. Sudan hosts some 360,000 refugees and asylum seekers from nearby countries, namely Central African Republic (CAR), Chad, Ethiopia, Eritrea, South Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. South Sudanese comprise the largest refugee population in Sudan, with over 231,000 arrivals since conflict erupted in South Sudan in December 2013.

East Africa: Family Planning in Refugee Camps

The Citizen, 5 July 2016

Family planning is probably the last thing on the mind of any person struggling to find food and shelter. It is understandably not something that any person tends to think of while trying to navigate challenging circumstances as a refugee. Women, specifically, are terrified of becoming pregnant because of their situation. We are talking about refugees who fled from their countries because of political unrest. And studies suggest that pregnancy can also carry a risk of death and disability for mothers and newborns, especially those who have been through trauma while fleeing from turmoil. As Lizzy Berryman, the head of emergencies for the medical charity Merlin puts it in her article in The Guardian, family planning still remains a low-cost way of reducing pregnancy-related deaths.

South Sudan marks 5th Independence anniversary as refugees flee violence and hunger

africanews, 9 July 2016

As the world’s youngest nation celebrates its fifth birthday, significant numbers of South Sudanese are still fleeing conflict and increasing hunger. Cecilia and her child are from South Sudan,  but will mark the independence anniversary in Kakuma, a refugee camp in Kenya. They are an example of the tens of thousands of fellow countrymen from the disturbed country. The young mother had to leave his native land because of lack of resources due to a long dry season.  And also because of the insecurity problem that has resulted to frequent clashes between rival groups in the country.

Increase in Zim migrants unlikely – US

News24, 7 July 2016

It is unlikely that the economic crisis and protests in Zimbabwe will cause an immediate increase in migrants, US officials have said. “We can always be surprised, and it is useful in terms of contingency planning to think the unthinkable,” director of the office of assistance for Africa in the bureau of population, refugees and migration, Margaret McKelvey, told journalists on Wednesday. Her office was “not anticipating an immediate uptick in the outflow” of people from the country. There had been a steady number of migrants leaving Zimbabwe over the past few years, but there could be some increase following recent unrest in the country.

INTERNATIONAL

Africa: Brexit – Nationalism or Xenophobic Populism?

allAfrica, 28 June 2016

No matter how it is dressed, Brexit was and is about immigration. Whether that translates to xenophobia is a subject to debate. If it’s xenophobia, the nearly 50 percent of the British people should be applauded for saying No. In a few days, the African Union will issue its first passports. A few weeks ago Ghana allowed free movement of any African into its territory by removing visa barriers. But a strange turn of events took place a few days ago when Great Britain had a referendum in which it opted to erect walls around its already geographically marooned island. The publicly offered reason was that it was compromising its sovereignty by being part of the European Union (EU).

Members back migration body joining the UN

Business day, 4 July 2016

THE International Organisation for Migration (IOM) has approved the organisation’s entry into the UN system. Head of the IOM mission in South Africa Richard Ots on Monday said following the recent surge in international migration and the adoption of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), the member states — including SA — decided that it would be best if the IOM found its institutional home within the UN. The IOM’s mandate would not change, but that the SDG goals pertaining to migration will fall under the IOM, Ots said. “Some of the work we are doing … for example is on (preventing) sexual and gender based violence, but the responsibility for the implementation of that is carried by a number of UN agencies, UN women is one of them … but for migrant women this becomes clearly the responsibility of IOM,” Ots said. The final approval for IOM’s joining the UN is due to be made by the UN general assembly on September 19.

Africa: EU Pledge of 100 Million Euro to Stem Ethiopian Migrant Flow

allAfrica, 5 July 2016

Ethiopia which hosts 750,000 refugees from Eritrea, South Sudan and Somalia contributes significant share of migrants to Europe. The European Union (EU), through its EU Trust Fund, has made a commitment of 100 million Euros to curb the flow of migrants fleeing Ethiopia by mitigating pushing factors through the creation of jobs for would-be migrants. In view of the massive inflow of migrants from Africa and the Middle East due to poor economic realities and volatile political situations, the EU is implementing measures to dry out pushing factors. Member countries of the Union are stepping up efforts to bolster border checkpoints to minimise the influx of migrants crossing deep into European territories.

 

 

 

 

Tags: Africa    forced migration;refugees; asylum seekers;development;xenophobia    immigration policy    xenophobia   

Categorised in: Press Review