Japan wants to (wisely) preserve its distinctive culture by limiting refugees
Posted by Ann Corcoran on October 7, 2015
They give generously to humanitarian causes around the world, but do not want to dilute their culture by admitting refugees. We have written many times on Japan, but once again as the Syrians are invading Europe, the Japanese are being called unwelcoming.
From USA Today:
TOKYO — It came as no surprise when Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced a major increase in financial support last week for migrants flooding into Western Europe — but no change in his country’s restrictive policy toward those seeking refuge in Japan.
For decades, Japan has been one of biggest contributors to international relief organizations, spending billions of dollars to help people fleeing wars, poverty and natural disasters worldwide.
Yet Japan also has been one of the least welcoming nations to refugees. Of 5,000 foreigners who requested political asylum in Japan last year, only 11 were granted safe haven, an acceptance rate that is 1/100th of the world average.
By comparison, the United States granted asylum to nearly 70% of 63,000 people who applied last year.
Refugee advocates say Japan’s reluctance to accept asylum seekers stems from a combination of factors: geographic isolation, language and cultural barriers, and a historical wariness of foreigners and a lack of interest in foreign affairs.
In one case cited by Watanabe, a Somali man’s asylum application was rejected after immigration officials concluded that while the man’s father and brother were murdered by al-Shabab terrorists, the rest of his family was not murdered and the asylum seeker remained in Somalia for several months before fleeing. The reviewing officer concluded: “We do not find that you have fear of being persecuted required by the refugee convention.” [I’ll bet a buck that the Somali asylum seeker couldn’t even prove that his father and brother were killed by al-Shabab!—ed]
There is more, continue reading here.
For American readers, just so you know, as the UNHCR is sending Somalis back to Somalia from its Kenyan camps we admitted 8,858 Somalis to the US in FY2015, here (many from the Kenyan camps!).
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