A dangerous world

Monday 10 June 2013

All the versions of this article: [English] [Español] [Português]

Authorship: Ana Muñoz

Editorial and Canal: Latin American Information Agency (Agencia Latinoamericana de Información) (ALAI)

Type of document: Article

Language: Spanish

Theme: Migration

Keywords: Human rights, Displacements, Migration, Refugee

Countries and Regions: Latin America

The world is turning everyday into a very dangerous thing for refugee and migrant people. This is the conclusion to which Amnesty International has reached on its report on the status of human rights in the planet. Poverty, conflicts, natural disasters… are compelling million of people to abandon their homes to strive for their lives and that of their family. Vulnerable people do not find an extended hand to help them, but rather a world rejecting them and relegating them to a life in shadow.

Over 72 million people from all over the world live away from their homes. Many of them do so in refugee camps, others in neighboring countries while others have to walk kilometers away to feel they are on safe grounds. This is the way of living for refugee people, away from their homes and from their countries to save their lives and compelled to live uprooted. Conflicts such as the one existing in Syria, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali or the Central African Republic have compelled million people to leave behind their lives and look into the future. Nevertheless, this future looks very gloomy.

“Since the conflict situations are not properly and efficiently discussed, a sort of second class category is being created. Rights of those escaping from conflicts are being trampled on and people is left unprotected”, denounces the Secretary General of Amnesty International, Salil Shetty.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is warning about the fact that we are facing record refugee figures in the world. Nevertheless, we are also living a time in which States created high hurdles in the borders. Amnesty International explains that refugees faced more difficulties to cross borders that, for example, “those responsible to increase violence that compels these people to flee from their homes”.

To the million of refugee people in the world, we should add 214 million of immigrant people. They are also facing a serious situation of vulnerability of their rights. According to Amnesty International “Neither the country of origin nor the receiving ones have done enough for the protection of these people”. At a time in which the countries from the North are still trying to overcome the financial crisis that started in 2008, immigrants are seeing their most fundamental rights undermined. In many of the receiving countries, xenophobia is on the rise and once again expressions such as “they are coming to steal our jobs” are heard. On top of the social problems, immigrants are suffering from the cuts in social budgets time and again. A clear example of that is Spain, where immigrants with no job or subsidy for unemployment no longer have the right to be treated by the public health service. So, in order to receive any care when suffering an illness they will first need to go to the cashier to pay.

Immigrants, displaced and refugee people are vulnerable, separated from their love ones and from their countries. Also, they are receiving a double punishment when instead of help them to overcome this reality they are condemned to continue living in misery, chased, treated as criminals… Society and international community no longer can continue looking to the other side. We citizens have the right to demand that human rights be respected and to be the same for everyone. Future is not carved on stone; we all have to build a fairer one. “The protection of human rights is something we all should share. The new information technology make impossible to hide abuses and unprecedented opportunities emerge for each person to defend the rights of millions of people”. The time of taking no action is over.

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