Posts Tagged ‘Refugees’

As the debate about Donald Trump’s immigration order continues to divide the nation, a new Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll has found that more Americans participating in the survey approve of the President’s action than disapprove.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order that suspended entry to the United States for citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days; bans all refugees from entry for 120 days; and bars all Syrian refugees from entering the United States indefinitely.

The poll, released on Tuesday, found that 49 percent of American adults either “somewhat” or “strongly” agree with the effort to enact stronger vetting. Meanwhile, 41 percent either “somewhat” or “strongly” disagree. The remaining 10 percent responded that they are unsure.

Predictably, the opinions were sharply divided along party lines, with 53 percent of Democrats strongly disagreeing, and 51 percent of Republicans strongly agreeing.

Additionally, the survey found that 31 percent of Americans feel “more safe” with the temporary restrictions, and just 26 percent feel “less safe.”

“Democrats were more than three times as likely as Republicans to say that the ‘US should continue to take in immigrants and refugees,’ and Republicans were more than three times as likely as Democrats to agree that ‘banning people from Muslim countries is necessary to prevent terrorism,” Reuters reports.

The poll was conducted from January 30-31, using responses from 453 Democrats and 478 Republicans.

 

Waivers have been granted to allow 872 refugees into the country this week by the US government for those who already went through the Obama Administration’s screening process and are now in transit.

The waivers were granted by the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is unclear what nationalities the recipients are, or if additional waivers will be granted.During a Tuesday briefing concerning the immigration orders, DHS Secretary John Kelly explained that the order is not a travel ban, but rather a pause to allow the government time to implement a new vetting system.

“This is not a travel ban, this is a temporary pause that allows us to better review the existing refugee and visa vetting system,” Kelly stated.

Kelly reiterated that the order is not a ban on Muslims, and that a change in the system is “long overdue,” and “strongly supported” by DHS officials.

“This is not, I repeat not, a ban on Muslims,” he said. “The Homeland Security mission is to safeguard the American people, our homeland, our values and religious liberty is one of our most fundamental and treasured values.”

Out of roughly a half a million people attempting to enter the US during the first three days of the order, 721 people were prevented from entering the United States, acting Customs and Border Protection commissioner Kevin McAleenan said.

Green card holders are permitted to board international flights to the US, although they will be subjected to additional screening upon their arrival.

During the briefing, Kelly was questioned about reports that some border patrol agents handcuffed detainees and tried to deport them, which the General flatly denied.

“No member of the Homeland Security team ignored a court order, nor would they ignore a court order,” Kelly said.

On Friday, US President Donald Trump signed an executive order that suspended entry to the United States for citizens of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days; bans all refugees from entry for 120 days; and bars all Syrian refugees from entering the United States indefinitely.

“Our job is to protect the homeland, these executive orders help do that,” Kelly said, noting that the order will be carried out “humanely” and “in accordance with the law.”

 

 

German voters believe Chancellor Angela Merkel overcommitted national resources for the refugee crisis and are increasingly frustrated with bailing out the continued economic struggles of other EU member-states.

Just under a third of Germans answering a questionnaire call for their country to abandon the European Union, according to a YouGov poll released Wednesday, signaling a growing discontent within the bloc’s largest member-state. A majority of Germans have traditionally been fervent supporters of the EU, compared to other countries in the economic alliance.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel (2nd R) stands with British Prime Minister David Cameron, U.S. President Barack Obama, French President Francois Hollande and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi before talks at Schloss Herrenhausen in Hanover, Germany April 25, 2016

The poll, commissioned by German newspaper Handelsblatt, found 29% of Germans in favor of leaving the EU if a referendum were to take place. Overall, only 54% of voters favor remaining in the EU, with the remainder undecided.

Analysts attribute growing political unrest in Berlin to voter frustration with EU-member Greece, as the country continues to require cash infusions at the expense of German and other member-state taxpayers, and an all-encompassing refugee crisis that has seen the country’s social services crippled by an influx of over 1.5 million Syrian immigrants.

The results come on the back of a separate survey conducted by polling firm Insa which showed 64% of those Germans participating in a survey opposing the once-popular Chancellor Angela Merkel. Discontent with the German leader spreads equally throughout the country, with 63.8% opposing Merkel in the west, and 64.8% in the east, illustrating widespread resentment likely to sabotage the chancellor’s hopes for reelection in 2017

The poll also indicates growing support for the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany (afD) party, a leading alternative to Merkel’s conservative Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU) party. A February poll identified the refugee crisis as the chancellor’s biggest challenge, with 81% of respondents saying that they did not believe that Merkel’s administration  had the migrant situation under control.

The situation for Merkel’s government looks to worsen in coming months, with the Federal Ministry of Finance (BMF) announcing plans in May to spend $105 billion (94 billion Euros) on incoming refugees over the next five years, an amount that rivals one year of the country’s military budget.

The new state expenditures come at a time when record numbers of German children are experiencing poverty, with 1.5 million needing assistance from the government, or approximately 14% of the country’s children. Figures from the Federal Employment Agency reflect that every third child living in Berlin is dependent on welfare.

Germany now faces a tense future, with a growing commitment to 1.5 million Middle Eastern refugees forcing cuts to necessary social services for an equal amount of German children, alongside growing threats to the stability of the EU, as British voters favor an exit, and with taxpayers on the line for the next round of bailouts for Greece.

Merkel’s political future, along with the entire EU, looks to be on shaky ground.