t was an innocuous-sounding statement via Twitter that would come to rock Europe. Issued in the dead of night by Germany’s Office for Migration and Refugees, it simply announced: “We are at present largely no longer enforcing #Dublin procedures for Syrian citizens.”
When the news sunk in that Germany was no longer going to deport Syrian migrants fleeing terror in the Middle East, it triggered a million-man march through Europe as Syrian refugees, joined by Iraqis, Afghanis and many other nationalities, rushed to claim their spot in Europe’s richest nation. Ignoring those who called her a “traitor” and a “whore” to her face, Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor, did not hesitate in welcoming the rising tide of stateless humanity. “We can do it”, she said – more a statement of fact (Germany could indeed afford it) than an exhortation.
For a few heady days, hearts soared across Europe as tens of thousands of volunteers lined the railway platforms of Germany to welcome new arrivals from Vienna and Budapest. Like Obama’s “yes we can”, Mrs Merkel’s, “we can do it” took on a life of its own. It didn’t take long before it was used against her. As the political reality of accepting vast numbers of refugees began to hit home, Mrs Merkel was pictured on the cover of Der Spiegel magazine framed in a blue-and-white Mother Theresa wimple. “Mutter Angela,” said the headline.
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Jan 17, 2018The Trump administration is preparing to withhold tens of millions of dollars from the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees, cutting the year’s first contribution by more than half or perhaps entirely and making additional donations contingent on major changes to the organization, US officials said. Donald Trump has not made a final decision but appears more […]
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