Migrants here to stay in Europe, now integrate them, OECD says

Updated 29 June 2017
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Migrants here to stay in Europe, now integrate them, OECD says

PARIS: The peak of the migrant crisis in Europe has passed, but many of those who came are here to stay, and governments must focus on helping them integrate, the OECD said Thursday.
In the first six months of this year, about 72,000 migrants landed on Europe’s shores, around 12 times fewer than in the second half of 2015 when the crisis peaked, the Paris-based body said in its annual report on international migration.
But many of those who came, fleeing war or persecution, “are likely to stay for some time, at least until their home countries are safe again,” said Stefano Scarpetta, OECD Director for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs, in the report.
The countries who took in migrants “should focus on helping refugees who are likely to stay in the host country settle and integrate in the labor market and society,” he said.
“This calls for a rethinking of both domestic policies and international cooperation,” Scarpetta added.
Despite numbers coming to Europe tailing off, in 2016, around 5 million people still migrated to OECD countries, mainly fleeing war in three countries: Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.
The figure compared to 4.7 million entries in 2015, making in the third successive year of rising arrivals.
Turkey alone is currently providing temporary protection for 3 million Syrians.
OECD countries registered more than 1.6 million asylum requests, with at least two-thirds in European states, and 1.5 million were granted.
For the fourth year running, Germany received most of the applications in 2016 with 675,000 requests, even though most of those lodging the applications had arrived in the waves of migrants of 2015.
Around 260,000 people arrived in the US and requested asylum, 120,000 in Italy, and France and Turkey each took in around 80,000, the OECD said.
Around half of the requests came from migrants who left Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq.
The OECD found that different nationalities were concentrated in specific countries. Gambians and Nigerians, for example, tended to remain in Italy, their first port of call in Europe, while Sudanese nationals moved on to France and Iranians headed for Britain.
Presenting the report, OECD Secretary-General Jose Angel Gurria said international efforts were needed to address “negative perceptions” about migration, “which are often rooted in a misconception of the benefit that migrants can bring to recipient countries.”
The report said some countries had stepped up their integration efforts, praising the examples of the fast-track integration program introduced in Sweden and the adoption of the first-ever law on integration in Germany.
But it said integration policies were falling short in other countries.


China admits reporting two major quakes which never happened

Updated 20 April 2018
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China admits reporting two major quakes which never happened

  • Earthquake monitor reported that two 6.5 magnitude quakes happened just 10 seconds apart at opposite ends of the country on April 19, 2018
  • Administration says they were holding an emergency response exercise and mock quakes were accidentally leaked 

BEIJING: China’s earthquake administration said on Friday that it had accidentally reported two major quakes which in fact had never happened, saying they were drills which had been unintentionally released to the public.
Late on Thursday, the administration said on its website there had been two 6.5 magnitude quakes just 10 seconds apart at opposite ends of the country — in the far western region of Xinjiang and in the southwestern province of Yunnan.
The information stayed on its website for at least an hour, though did not appear on its microblog, which is how many people in China first learn of quakes.
In a statement on its website, the administration said they had in fact been holding an emergency response exercise.
“An accidental leak of the quake drill was picked up by the media and caused a misunderstanding,” it said. “After this happened, our administration immediately organized relevant departments to delete the inaccurate information.”
China is a seismically active country frequently hit by major earthquakes.
A decade ago a 7.9 magnitude quake rocked the southwestern province of Sichuan, killing almost 70,000 people.