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‘Climate of Xenophobia’ Gripping Europe, UN Official Warns

As more details indicate the killing of British lawmaker Jo Cox was politically motivated, the United Nations Refugee Agency head is warning of a “climate of xenophobia” gripping Europe.

Speaking to Agence France-Presse in Tehran on Saturday, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said, “Refugees… don’t bring danger” but “flee from dangerous places.”

He put responsibility on the shoulders of national leaders, saying that those who don’t talk about the benefits of immigration but instead “stir up public opinion against refugees and migrants have a responsibility in creating a climate of xenophobia that is very worrying in today’s Europe.”

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also touched on the issue on Saturdayurging the region to reject “barriers and bigotry” as a response to the influx of refugees and instead take “a humane and human rights-based approach” because that’s “our humanitarian imperative. It is what we must do as a human family.”

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