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Executive Summary for July 13th

We review the latest issues related to refugees, including the suicide of a young Afghan deportee from Germany, the U.S. reportedly extending restrictions on asylum, and the U.K. reinstating legal aid for unaccompanied children.

Published on July 13, 2018 Read time Approx. 2 minutes

Suicide of Deported Afghan Sours German Interior Minister’s Joke

German interior minister Horst Seehofer’s joke about increasing deportations sparked criticism after the suicide of a young Afghan who had been returned by Germany. Unveiling his party’s migration reform plan this week, Seehofer quipped about 69 Afghans being deported on his 69th birthday.

Among them was a 23-year-old Afghan who had lived in Germany for eight years. He was found dead in Kabul shortly after he arrived. Seehofer defended himself as political opponents called for his resignation. The interior minister is trying to retain his leadership of the CSU party, a coalition partner in Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government, which is falling in the polls.

CNN: U.S. Orders Asylum Officers to Reject Domestic, Gang Violence Fears

The Trump administration issued new guidance instructing officers who interview asylum seekers at the border to reject people citing domestic or gang violence, CNN reported. The new measures reflect Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recent restrictive interpretation of asylum.

According to CNN, the guidelines also tell officers to take into consideration whether asylum seekers crossed the border “illegally” and weigh this against their claim in the initial interviews. Human rights groups warned the guidance could block people from claiming asylum, in violation of United States and international law.

A Deeper Look

U.K. Reinstates Legal Aid for Unaccompanied Children

The United Kingdom government said it would reinstate free legal support for unaccompanied children to seek asylum after it was cut five years ago. British nonprofit organisation the Children’s Society, which pursued a legal case against the government, called the reversal an “important change.”

Recommended #MustReads

“The HOPE program he is on trains refugees for jobs that companies struggle to fill, as a massive skills mismatch, especially in manufacturing, creates bottlenecks in the recovering economy.”

“Considerably more robust evidence is needed if policymakers are to navigate questions such as: Is it better for newcomers to enter work quickly or to first spend time and money developing skills valued in local labor markets?”

“Despite the toxic debates which suggest otherwise, regular pathways for migration do exist and there is a potential for reform. However, while we know that such pathways exist, evidence is lacking on their delivery and impacts.”

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