UN: UN chief says refugees needs protection

New York, US (PANA) - UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday said refugees fleeing conflict and persecution are entitled to protection and care, and expressed concern at some decisions that have undermined the integrity of the international refugee protection regime.

In a statement obtained by PANA in New York, Guterres stated: "Refugees fleeing conflict and persecution are finding more and more borders closed and increasingly restricted access to the protection they need and are entitled to receive, according to international refugee law."

The UN chief made a particular mention of Ethiopia, the largest refugee-hosting country in Africa, that, he noted "for decades has been keeping its borders open to hundreds of thousands of refugees from its neighbours, many times in dramatic security situations."

He said that countries have the right and the obligation, to responsibly manage their borders to avoid infiltration by members of terrorist organizations, but cautioned that, "this cannot be based on any form of discrimination related to religion, ethnicity or nationality."

He noted that, "doing so, is against the fundamental principles and values on which our societies are based."

Guterres also warned that it could "trigger widespread anxiety and anger that may facilitate the propaganda of the very terrorist organizations we all want to fight against, and that blind measures, not based on solid intelligence, tend to be ineffective as they risk being bypassed by what are today sophisticated global terrorist movements."

The UN chief also expressed his disagreement with US President Donald Trump's Executive Order on immigration and refugees.

The statement followed Trump’s signing last Friday of an Executive Order that, among things, suspended the US refugee programme for 120 days and also barred entry of refugees from several mostly Muslim countries, including Syria, until further notice.
-0-  PANA  AA 31Jan2016

31 january 2017 19:14:32

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