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Executive Summary for July 7th

We review the latest issues related to refugees, including gang violence driving record migration from Central America, a palatial home for a Syrian refugee family and the man who smuggled himself in a suitcase.

Published on July 7, 2016 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

Five-fold Increase in Refugees From Parts of Central America

Gang violence in Central America has driven a five-fold increase in refugee numbers in three years, says the U.N.

Tens of thousands of people are fleeing El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, three countries with the highest murder rates in the world. Most are heading to the U.S. as refugees or asylum seekers.

The U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR) said the number of refugees and asylum seekers from these three countries alone reached 109,800 in 2015.

“People who saw husbands shot in front of their eyes. People who don’t want their children to be drawn into gangs. It’s a very strong system of repression and exploitation imposed by organized criminal groups,” UNCHR’s Volker Turk told Reuters on the sidelines of a conference in Costa Rica on Central America’s forced displacement problem.

Some 14,600 Hondurans applied for refugee status worldwide in 2015, nearly double the figure in 2014.

Anglican Archbishop to House Syrian family at His Palace

The leader of the Church of England will house a family of Syrian refugees at his London residence. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, the spiritual leader of the world’s 85 million Anglicans, will welcome a Syrian family to a cottage in the grounds of Lambeth Palace from next month.

The gesture follows a similar move by the Pope, who returned from the Greek island of Lesbos with a dozen Syrian refugees earlier this year.

After five years of civil war, 13 million people – or more than half of all Syrians – are either refugees beyond its borders or displaced within Syria.

“We have worked with the Home Office and Lambeth Palace to support the Archbishop’s undertaking to house a family within the grounds of Lambeth Palace,” said an official from the local council.

Man Caught Trying to Smuggle Himself Inside Suitcase

Swiss border guards have deported an Eritrean man after finding him inside a suitcase aboard a train from Italy.

A video posted online showed the guards helping the 21-year-old clamber out of the suitcase after he unzipped it from the inside.

A Swiss border official in the Ticino region of southern Switzerland said on July 6 that the man was detained and sent back to Italy after he opted not to request asylum.

“We’ve had people try to sneak in in a car trunk,” said Mirco Ricci, a Swiss border official. “This is the first time we’ve seen in Ticino that we’ve found someone in a bag.”

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