My Stance on Immigration and Integration

Contrary to some people’s believes neither I nor the Green Party, of which I’m a member, support open borders or unlimited immigration. The Green Party does want a fairer asylum process, but has never said we should accept everyone who wants to come to the UK.

The Green Party advocates improvement of the local situation of people who feel the need to migrate for a better life and so minimise the need of economic emigration. The Green Party is also opposing the arms trade and wants to keep an army for defensive purposes to minimise war and conflict and so the need for people to flee their own country for survival.

The No Borders/No One Is Illegal movements are separate entities from the Green Party.

See:
https://www.greenparty.org.uk/news/2014/02/10/natalie-bennett-speech-immigration-policy-time-for-the-facts,-time-for-humanity/ https://policy.greenparty.org.uk/mg.html


The refugee convention clearly states that asylum is a two way deal. The host country gives the refugee a place of safety and in return the refugee abides by the host country’s laws and customs.
http://www.unhcr.org/pages/49da0e466.html

I have always said that mulitculturalism is fine and ethnic minority communities should be allowed to practice their own culture AS LONG AS IT’S COMPATIBLE with the laws and customs of the host country.

Sadly too often those in favour have been very keen to uphold the freedom and rights of people to practice their cultures without addressing the bad traditions which are in direct conflict with the values of the country they live in like gender equality, marriage equality, the rights of the child etc etc etc.

The right to practice one’s own culture is not above the law or the values of the host country.

No one should respect bad traditions. Traditions shouldn’t be kept if they are not beneficial just because they have existed for centuries.

Everyone who lives in a country not their own should learn the language and live according to the laws and values of the host country.

I’ve never turned a blind eye to crimes committed by foreigners, nor do many other immigrants or asylum seekers/refugees. The man in the following article is the type of immigrant and refugee I support, a man who is working to help other refugees integrate through his own newspaper.

This is an interview in the Tages Anzeiger, a Swiss newspaper, with a Syrian refugee, Ramy al-Asheq. He fled Syria in 2011 and has been living in Cologne since 2014 (translation follows):

Frage: Sie leben in Köln …

Ramy al-Asheq:
… ich war während der Silvesternacht nicht in der Stadt und weiss darum alles bloss aus zweiter Hand. Aber eins steht fest: Alle Männer, die an den sexuellen Übergriffen und den Diebstählen beteiligt waren – seien es Syrer, Algerier, Amerikaner oder Deutsche –, gehören ins Gefängnis. Sie sind Kriminelle, und hätte die Polizei ihre Arbeit getan, dann wären sie auch dort. Oder in der Psychiatrie.

Frage:
In Ihrer Zeitschrift erklären Sie den Lesern die hiesige Freiheit. Wie gross ist der Klärungsbedarf?

Ramy al-Asheq: Klärungsbedarf gibt es eine Menge. Und wir versuchen dem konstruktiv nachzukommen, etwa mit Erläuterungen zu grundlegenden Gesetzen oder mit Integrationstipps. Es stimmt auch, dass die Freiheit der Frauen hier andere Formen annimmt als in arabischen Ländern und dies erst einmal irritieren kann. Aber wenn sich Betrunkene an Frauen vergreifen, ist das in keiner Kultur in Ordnung. Im Übrigen bin ich sicher, dass die Übergriffe nicht von radikalen Muslimen verübt wurden – denn die trinken nicht.

Translation:

Question:
You live in Cologne…

Ramy al-Asheq:
… I wasn’t in the city centre for New Year’s Eve and therefore only know what happened from what I was told. But one thing is clear: all men who participated in the robberies and the sexual assaults – be they Syrians, Algerians, Americans or Germans – belong in jail. They are criminals and had the police done their job then they would be in jail. Or in a psychiatric ward.

Question:
In your newspaper you explain to your readers about the local values of freedom. How much clarification is needed?

Ramy al-Asheq:
The need for clarification is great. And we are trying to address it constructively, with explanations to the basic laws or with tips on how to integrate. It’s also true that the values of freedom for women here are very different to those in Arabic countries and this can first be irritating. But when drunken people assault women hen that’s wrong in ever culture. Besides I’m certain that the assaults weren’t carried out by extremist Muslims – because they don’t drink.

You can find the complete interview with Ramy al-Asheq here. Use Google translate if you do not understand German (https://translate.google.com/manager/website/add):

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