A People with Nowhere to Go

A report released by Amnesty International recently said that for the first time since the Second World War, the number of refuges in the world has exceeded 50 million. Countries like Lebanon, Turkey and Pakistan host more than a million refugees each, who have fled their war torn countries to take refuge in their neighboring countries.  In April this year, more than 1000 refugees died in the Mediterranean Sea because the rich European countries did not want to take them. With a few days of outrage, the news died down. Last month, Rohingya refugees fleeing from persecution in their native country of Burma were left stranded in the sea as none of the South East countries like Indonesia, Malaysia or Philippines refused to take them.

Even the United Nations has come out strongly against the US and the European Union saying they have not done enough to accommodate refugees even from those conflicts in which they have been a party. The world is facing a huge humanitarian crisis in the shape of these refugees and it seems surviving a conflict is a curse since there is no one to take care of these hapless people. These people are often left to rot in the hopelessness of refugee camps and treated worse than animals.

Another kind of homeless people are those migrants who have left their countries seeking jobs and hence can be called as economic migrants. Most of the rich and powerful countries are making strong anti immigrant laws. Owing to the strong dislike that these countries are showing for migrants and refugees, most of these people are not able to seek asylum in these countries. In fact, in many countries, political parties have taken advantage of these situations and helped create xenophobia and thereby consolidate their vote base. The refusal to accommodate refugees and grant them asylum shows the hypocrisy of these countries and all their claims of being just and enlightened societies are turned upside down. Reacting to the situation, the United Nations commissioner for human rights, Zeid Ra’ad Hussein, told the that he was “shocked and shamed by the frequent demonization of migrants that we see in many countries whose people benefit from prosperity, peace and ease”.

Europe, which prides itself in taking care of the millions of refugees in the aftermath of the Second World War, has turned insensitive and indifferent to the present global refugee crisis. The migrants and refugees are generally looked down upon and shown disdain by them. The fear is that they will put a strain on the resources of these countries, but they fail to realize that immigrants and people who have taken asylum in Europe have immensely benefited these countries by their productivity and hard work. Right now these countries are driven by a perverse mindset which shows utter disregard for human suffering and misery. The situation is not expected to change anytime soon.

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