WRITTEN BY EDITOR KALAHAN DENG
I strongly maintain that the Russian President Putin should be the last leader and a politician on this planet to point his finger on other nations on what is happening in Syria, Iraq, and Europe in regard to the recent influx of refugees from across the Middle East, North Africa, Iraq, and Afghanistan. In his recent interview with the Russian media, Putin casted the first stone on the American policies in the world and said that, “The United States is imposing its own standards on countries in the Middle East and Africa”.
Well, what about you in Ukraine, Georgia, and elsewhere in the world, especially in Syria? I guess you need to be reminded by your political advisers since you have forgotten your own ruthless interference in other countries. Can you imagine, without a shame, President Putin told the media that the migrant crisis in Europe was an “absolutely expected crisis.” He also said, “Europe is blindly following American instructions and suffering badly.”
Here is the interesting part on his foreign policies, the Russian Foreign Ministry’s spokespersons, Maria Zakharova said, “Europe could learn from Russia how to deal with refugees.” She said, “Russia had taken in hundreds of thousands of refugees from Ukraine,” Saying, “These people were provided with shelter food and benefits.” Unfortunately, her claim was immediately disputed by Svetiana Gannushkina, a human rights activist and founder of the Citizen’s Assistance Committee in Moscow, vehemently disagreed. “To say Russia has taken such a huge number of Ukrainian refugees is simply a bare faced lie. Only a few hundred people from Ukraine have refugee status in Russia.”
Here are the facts we should be aware of in regard to Mr. Putin’s administration. The official statistics from Russia’s Federal Migration Services suggest that at the end of 2014 there were 790 people in Russia who had refugee status. They include 419 people from Afghanistan, 229 from Ukraine, and 2 from Syria. Recent reports now suggest that some Syrians are using Russia as a transit point to Europe.
The problem with migrants who remain in Russia and who try to claim refugee status, Ms. Gannushkina said is that, “Refugees are sometimes barred from accessing official channels of help because they are not issued with correct papers which document their status.” President Putin, on the other hand, pointed out that Europe’s failure to tackle the migrant crisis was a result of US policy, “Imposing its standards without taking into consideration historic, religious, and national and cultural specifics of these regions.”
It is apparent that Mr. Putin has forgotten that he continued backing Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and today Putin said that Syrians “are not escaping the Bashar Assad regime.” What a contradiction from Mr. Putin?