Sep 11, 2012 at 10:56am IST

It's getting tough for migrants everywhere

United States

On August 5, Micahel Wade Page killed six people inside a Sikh Gurdwara in Wisconsin, along with a police officer. Page was a supremacist, involved in underground music known as white power music or hate rock.

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FBI statistics show that since 2008, hate crimes towards African Americans have increased.

It's getting tough for migrants everywhere

Violence against migrants has surfaced across the map. Reasons vary from competition over jobs and homes to nationalistic sentiments.

Between 1996 and 2007, hate crimes had never crossed the 70 per cent mark, but in 2008 it touched 72.9 per cent.

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South Africa

Violence against migrants from other African nations increased after the end of apartheid in South Africa in 1994.

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A 2004 report by South African Migration Watch found that 21 per cent of South Africans favoured a complete ban on entry of foreigners, 64 per cent wanted strict limits on the number of foreigners allowed.

In May 2008 migrants from Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe were attacked in riots that killed 62 people. A Human Sciences Research Council report found competition for jobs, commodities and housing, and nationalistic sentiments as reasons.

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Attacks this July displaced 500 foreigners.

Greece

Greece is the entry point for thousands of migrants and asylum seekers into Europe. A CNN report says about 300 undocumented migrants arrive in Greece from Turkey.

Under European Union rules Greece must process all claims of asylum, but a dysfunctional system makes this difficult.

A Human Rights Watch report says gangs of Greeks regularly attack migrants and asylum seekers in Athens and other parts of the country. The system discourages victims from lodging complaints. HRW interviewed 59 people who had faced or escaped xenophobic incidents, including 51 serious attacks, between August 2009 and May 2012.

Italy

In 2010, violent clashes between migrant labourers and local residents in Rosarno, Southern Italy, led to at least 1,000 migrants fleeing or being removed from homes. The government blamed it on a legacy of uncontrolled migration.

Earlier incidences include the brutal beating of a Chinese man in 2008 in Rome, the beating and setting on fire of an Indian man near Rome in 2009 and the knifing of a Senegalese man in Milan the same year.

A Human Rights Watch report says the focus on immigration issues for political ends has created an environment for open expression of racist and

xenophobic sentiment.

India

Migrants from Bangladesh are believed to be the reason behind their violent clashes with Assam's Bodo tribe in July which left 77 people dead and thousands homeless. Consequently, more than 30,000 people from North Eastern states fled Bangalore in fear of retaliatory violence.

In 2008, migrant workers from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar were attacked in Maharshtra as a fallout of a clash between Maharashtra Navnirman Sena and Samajwadi Party. Following the attacks, thousands of North Indian workers left Pune, Nashik and Mumbai.

Sources

Human Rights Watch

Amnesty International

Human Sciences Research Council

Southern African Migration Project

UNDP Human Development Report 2009 on Xenophobia, International Migration and Human Development by Jonathan Crush and Sujata Ramachandran

CNN

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