Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 34

Refugees Related Abstracts

34 Environmental Refugees in Africa: A Case Study of Sahel Region

Authors: Ahlem Setrallah


Environment has become a phenomenon directly linked to security in recent decades. This security aspect of environment is justified by the challenges that environment problems can have on human life and thus security especially within the scope of human security that is based mainly on the individual rather than on the state. Because Africa is not safe from the global warming and all its consequences on environment, this continent has witnessed many crises related to environment and that have had direct impact on security in Africa. One of those crises is environmental displacement or immigration which was caused by natural disasters like draught, desertification and food shortage to name but a few. This paper aims at shedding light at some important cases in the Africa focusing mainly on the Sahel region. The main research questions that we are trying to answer are the following: 1-What is the relationship between environment and forced immigration in the Sahel region? 2-What is the impact of environmental immigration on Security in the region? 3-How have the states in this region reacted to this crisis? 4-Is the measures taken by those states adequate or not? 5- How to remedy for the limitations of those measures? The paper is based on case study methodology as a way to better understand the relationship between security and environment using library research for data collection and analysis. This paper aims also at presenting some suggesting regarding possible ways of reducing the negative impact of environmental immigration.

Keywords: Security, Environment, Refugees, Sahel region

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33 The Effects of Irregular Immigration Originating from Syria on Turkey's Security Issues

Authors: Muzaffer Topgul, Hasan Atac


After the September 11 attacks, fight against terrorism has risen to higher levels in security concepts of the countries. The following reactions of some nation states have led to the formation of unstable areas in different parts of the World. Especially, in Iraq and Syria, the influences of radical groups have risen with the weakening of the central governments. Turkey (with the geographical proximity to the current crisis) has become a stop on the movement of people who were displaced because of terrorism. In the process, the policies of the Syrian regime resulted in a civil war which is still going on since 2011, and remain as an unresolved crisis. With the extension of the problem, changes occurred in foreign policies of the World Powers; moreover, the ongoing effects of the riots, conflicts of interests of foreign powers, conflicts in the region because of the activities of radical groups increased instability within the country. This case continues to affect the security of Turkey, particularly illegal immigration. It has exceeded the number of two million Syrians who took refuge in Turkey due to the civil war, while continuing uncertainty about the legal status of asylum seekers, besides the security problems of asylum-seekers themselves, there are problems in education, health and communication (language) as well. In this study, we will evaluate the term of immigration through the eyes of national and international law, place the disorganized and illegal immigration in security sphere, and define the elements/components of irregular migration within the changing security concept. Ultimately, this article will assess the effects of the Syrian refuges to Turkey’s short-term, mid-term, and long-term security in the light of the national and international data flows and solutions will be presented to the ongoing problem. While explaining the security problems the data and the donnees obtained from the nation and international corporations will be examined thorough the human security dimensions such as living conditions of the immigrants, the ratio of the genders, especially birth rate occasions, the education circumstances of the immigrant children, the effects of the illegal passing on the public order. In addition, the demographic change caused by the immigrants will be analyzed, the changing economical conditions where the immigrants mostly accumulate, and their participation in public life will be worked on and the economical obstacles sourcing due to irregular immigration will be clarified. By the entire datum gathered from the educational, cultural, social, economic, demographical extents, the regional factors affecting the migration and the role of irregular migration in Turkey’s future security will be revealed by implication to current knowledge sources.

Keywords: human security, Refugees, Displaced People, Irregular Migration

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32 Tracing Syrian Refugees Urban Mobilities: The Case of Egypt and Canada

Authors: N. Elgendy, N. Hussein


The current Syrian crisis has caused unprecedented practices of global mobility. The process of forced eviction and the resettlement of refugees could be seen through the insights of the “new mobilities paradigm”. The mobility of refugees in terms of meaning and practice is a subject that calls for further studies. There is a need for the development of an approach to human mobility to understand a practice that is turning into a phenomenon in the 21st century. This paper aims at studying, from a qualitative point of view, the process of movement within the six constituents of mobility defined as the first phase of the journey of a refugee. The second phase would include the process of settling in and re-defining the host country as new “home” to refugees. The change in the refugee state of mind and crossing the physical and mental borders from a “foreigner” to a citizen is encouraged by both the governmental policies and the local communities’ efforts to embrace these newcomers. The paper would focus on these policies of social and economic integration. The concept of integration connotes the idea that refugees would enjoy the opportunities, rights and services available to the citizens of the refugee’s new community. So, this paper examines this concept through showcasing the two hosting countries of Canada and Egypt, as they provide two contrasting situations in terms of cultural, geographical, economic and political backgrounds. The analysis would highlight the specific policies defined towards the refugees including the mass communication, media calls, and access to employment. This research is part of a qualitative research project on the process of Urban Mobility practiced by the Syrian Refugees, drawing on conversational interviews with new-settlers who have moved to the different hosting countries, from their home in Syria. It explores these immigrants’ practical and emotional relationships with the process of movement and settlement. It uses the conversational interviews as a tool to document analysis and draw relationships in an attempt to establish an understanding of the factors that contribute to the new-settlers feeling of home and integration within the new community.

Keywords: Mobility, Policy, Integration, Refugees

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31 The Current Crisis of Refugees and Contemporary Ethics

Authors: Thiago R. Pereira, Leila Angélica de O. Castro


The number of refugees currently is alarming, having overcome the numbers of World War II. The objective of this research will be to examine this refugee crisis the light of the main contemporary ethical theories, mainly by analyzing whether there is an ethical obligation to assist these refugees. Among the many existing theories like virtue ethics, Kantian ethics, utilitarian ethics, ethical egoism and psychological egoism, will be the ethical theories used to analyze the current refugee crisis. The ethics of virtue is the oldest of theories, an action can be considered correct if we are acting virtuously if we predisposition to act that virtuously, where the goal is always the eudaimonia, a good life, a happy life. The Kantian ethics of the works of the philosopher Immanuel Kant, where we apply the hypothetical and categorical imperatives to find universal truths, actions that we consider to be universally correct. Utilitarian ethics believes that action will be considered as correct to bring happiness to the greatest possible number of people, even if they somehow have to bring unhappiness to any number of people. Ethical egoism should be concerned first with our individual happiness, and then we can worry about the happiness of others, so long as it causes us some happiness. Thus, action is correct since it is causing us a greater degree of happiness than unhappiness. Finally, the psychological egoism does not seek to determine whether an action is right or not, but claims that all our actions, even if they seem altruistic, actually has another motivation, which will always be a selfish motivation, that is, concerned with the our well-being. From these initial concepts, the issue of refugees, especially the question of whether states and their citizens have or not any ethical obligation to help them and receive them in their territories will be analyzed .

Keywords: Ethics, Refugees, obligation to help, contemporary theories

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30 Fear-Mongering and Its Antidotes: The Case of the Hungarian Anti-Migrant Campaign

Authors: Zsofia Nagy


A sharp increase in the number of refugees crossing Hungary during 2015, coupled with the Hungarian government’s agenda-setting strategy led to a powerful anti-migrant campaign in public, framing asylum-seekers as external threats to the country. While this campaign was, by and large, unchallenged by the Hungarian parliamentary opposition, Two-Tailed Dog Party, a Hungarian mock-party launched a counter-billboard campaign attacking the governmental discourse. Taking the latter as a case of digitally supported civic action, the paper first discusses two theoretical problems related to contemporary social movements: the problem of voice and the problem of participation. Afterward the paper presents the case of the Hungarian anti-migrant billboard campaign led by the government and the counter-billboard campaign and examines their action repertoires. It argues that a number of strategic differences are noteworthy: contrasts between traditional and digital methods, the reliance on the ’spirals of silence’ on the one hand and the breaking of this very silence on the other, where people are holding a minority opinion were given a platform and visibility in public. On a deeper level, the counter-campaign challenged the hegemonic views about public discourse. It effectively contrasted the government’s one-to-many, top-bottom approach to political communication with a campaign that relied on many-to-many communication and a bottom-up approach. While it is true that through memetic engineering, the original governmental messages were altered and the outcomes were brought back to the streets of Hungary; the effects of the two campaigns nevertheless reinforced the original anti-migrant focus of the political agenda.

Keywords: Migration, Refugees, Social Movements, counterpublics

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29 Using Music in the Classroom to Help Syrian Refugees Deal with Post-War Trauma

Authors: Vartan Agopian


Millions of Syrian families have been displaced since the beginning of the Syrian war, and the negative effects of post-war trauma have shown detrimental effects on the mental health of refugee children. While educational strategies have focused on vocational training and academic achievement, little has been done to include music in the school curriculum to help these children improve their mental health. The literature of music education and psychology, on the other hand, shows the positive effects of music on traumatized children, especially when it comes to dealing with stress. This paper presents a brief literature review of trauma, music therapy, and music in the classroom, after having introduced the Syrian war and refugee situation. Furthermore, the paper highlights the benefits of using music with traumatized children from the literature and offers strategies for teachers (such as singing, playing an instrument, songwriting, and others) to include music in their classrooms to help Syrian refugee children deal with post-war trauma.

Keywords: Music, War, Children, Refugees, Syria

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28 Media, Politics and Power in the Representation of the Refugee and Migration Crisis in Europe

Authors: Evangelia-Matroni Tomara


This thesis answers the question whether the media representations and reporting in 2015-2016 - especially, after the image of the drowned three-year-old Syrian boy in the Mediterranean Sea which made global headlines in the beginning of September 2015 -, the European Commission regulatory sources material and related reporting, have the power to challenge the conceptualization of humanitarianism or even redefine it. The theoretical foundations of the thesis are based on humanitarianism and its core definitions, the power of media representations and the relative portrayal of migrants, refugees and/or asylum seekers, as well as the dominant migration discourse and EU migration governance. Using content analysis for the media portrayal of migrants (436 newspaper articles) and qualitative content analysis for the European Commission Communication documents from May 2015 until June 2016 that required various depths of interpretation, this thesis allowed us to revise the concept of humanitarianism, realizing that the current crisis may seem to be a turning point for Europe but is not enough to overcome the past hostile media discourses and suppress the historical perspective of security and control-oriented EU migration policies. In particular, the crisis helped to shift the intensity of hostility and the persistence in the state-centric, border-oriented securitization in Europe into a narration of victimization rather than threat where mercy and charity dynamics are dominated and into operational mechanisms, noting the emergency of immediate management of the massive migrations flows, respectively. Although, the understanding of a rights-based response to the ongoing migration crisis, is being followed discursively in both political and media stage, the nexus described, points out that the binary between ‘us’ and ‘them’ still exists, with only difference that the ‘invaders’ are now ‘pathetic’ but still ‘invaders’. In this context, the migration crisis challenges the concept of humanitarianism because rights dignify migrants as individuals only in a discursive or secondary level while the humanitarian work is mostly related with the geopolitical and economic interests of the ‘savior’ states.

Keywords: Refugees, Immigration, Humanitarianism, Security Studies, media representation, European Union politics, policy-making

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27 Crossing Borders: A Case Study on the Entry and Asylum of Sirius Refugees in Turkey

Authors: Stephanie M. De Oliveira


For a long time, migrations are characterized as a difficult problem to solve. Various phenomena throughout human history caused personnel migrations, whether by the free will of migrants or not. Nowadays, governments that seek to give these people protection and dignity, either to asylum or to build a new life in a different country, make refugee protection. At present, a large amount of people, have been crossing their country's borders by land, air or sea, becoming refugees and seeking a new life away from fear, threat or violence they suffered in their country of origin. It is known that some countries have already instituted rights and rules for refugees who wish to become citizens in the country to which they immigrated, even though this is not what happens in most cases. The article will be based on research made with UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) material as well as will analyze the interaction of the Turkish government with the European Union. Since Turkey is not part of the Union, it will be understood how the interaction was made, as well as the search for consensus, and not only humanitarian but also financial aid. The treatment of refugees and the defense of human rights within the country will also be considered.

Keywords: Turkey, Refugees, asylum seekers, United Nations

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26 Illegal Migration and Refugee Crisis as a Threat to National Security, Economic and Social System: The Bulgarian Case

Authors: Jordan Deliversky


Unlike all conventional forms of migration, migration crisis and migratory processes provide pressure to governments and are being expressed as different phenomenon in relation to nature and forms. The objective of this paper is to present the migration and refugee crisis as revealing numerous challenges faced by authorities responsible for the social and economic stability in Bulgaria as well as those providing conditions for reinforcement of the high level of national security in Bulgaria. The analysis is focused on exploring the multiple origins of factors influencing migration processes in Europe, in the light of the measures provided by the Bulgarian state authorities. The main results show that the society itself is facing the challenge of integrating refugees and migrants, so to be able to comply with the principles and values associated with tolerance to social, religious and cultural differences, and not allowing migrants to become marginalized community. Migration pressure creates a number of risks and threats to the Bulgarian national security. Our country has the capacity and resources to meet these potential threats, as a main factor for minimizing the risks to national security is the improvement of coordination and coherence of actions between various actors serving to the security sector.

Keywords: Security, Terrorism, Refugees, Legislation, migrants

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25 Assessing the Sheltering Response in the Middle East: Studying Syrian Camps in Jordan

Authors: Lara A. Alshawawreh, R. Sean Smith, John B. Wood


This study focuses on the sheltering response in the Middle East, specifically through reviewing two Syrian refugee camps in Jordan, involving Zaatari and Azraq. Zaatari camp involved the rapid deployment of tents and shelters over a very short period of time and Azraq was purpose built and pre-planned over a longer period. At present, both camps collectively host more than 133,000 occupants. Field visits were taken to both camps and the main issues and problems in the sheltering response were highlighted through focus group discussions with camp occupants and inspection of shelter habitats. This provided both subjective and objective research data sources. While every case has its own significance and deployment to meet humanitarian needs, there are some common requirements irrespective of geographical region. The results suggest that there is a gap in the suitability of the required habitat needs and what has been provided. It is recommended that the global international response and support could be improved in relation to the habitat form, construction type, layout, function and critically the cultural aspects. Services, health and hygiene are key elements to the shelter habitat provision. The study also identified the amendments to shelters undertaken by the beneficiaries providing insight into their key main requirements. The outcomes from this study could provide an important learning opportunity to develop improved habitat response for future shelters.

Keywords: Culture, Refugees, Shelters, post-disaster

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24 Refuge(e)s in Digital Diaspora: Reimagining and Reimaging ‘Ethnically Cleansed’ Villages as ‘Cyber Villages’

Authors: Hariz Halilovich


Based on conventional and digital ethnography, this paper discusses the ways Bosnian refugees utilise digital technologies and new media to recreate, synchronise and sustain their identities and memories in the aftermath of ‘ethnic cleansing’ and genocide and in the contexts of their new emplacements and home-making practices in diaspora. In addition to discussing representations of displacement and emplacement in the ‘digital age’, the paper also aims to make a contribution to the understanding and application of digital ethnography as an emerging method of inquiry in anthropology and related social science disciplines. While some researchers see digital ethnography as an exclusively online–based research, the author of this paper argues that it is critical to understand the online world in the context of the real world—made of real people, places, and social relations.

Keywords: Refugees, Bosnia, cyber villages, digital diaspora

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23 Enforceability of the Right to Education and Rights in Education for Refugees after the European Refugee Crisis

Authors: Kurt Willems


The right to education is a fundamental human right, which has been entrenched in many international and regional treaties and national constitutions. Nevertheless, practice shows that many obstacles impede easy access to quality education for refugees. Overall, the material effects of international human rights legislation on improving (irregular) migrants’ access to social rights in the European countries have remained limited due to the lack of guarantees on effective incorporation in the municipal legal order and due to the lack of effective enforcement mechanisms. After the recent refugee crisis in Europe, this issue has grown in importance. The presentation aims to give a brief overview of the most important issues impeding the effective enforceability of the right to education for refugees. I. Do refugees fall within the scope of application of the relevant human rights treaties and to which extent can they invoke human rights treaties in domestic courts to set aside domestic legislation? II. How is the justiciability of the right to education organized in those treaties? III. What is the legal answer to questions raised in practice when dealing with the influx of refugees in Europe: (i) can refugees be placed in separate schools or classes until they can follow the regular curriculum?; (ii) can higher school fees be asked from pupils without legal documents?; (iii) do refugees have a right to be taught in their own native language until they learn to speak the national language? To answer the above questions, the doctrinal and comparative legal method will be used. The normative framework, as interpreted within Europe, will be distilled from the recent and relevant international treaties and European law instruments (in particular the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the European Convention on human rights, the European Social Charter and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights) and their underlying policy documents, the legal literature, the (limited) European jurisprudence, and the general comments to those treaties. The article is mainly descriptive in nature. Its aim is to serve as a summary of the legal provisions, case law and legal literature on the topic of the right to education for refugees. The research shows that the reasons for the delicate enforceability of the rights to and the rights in education are multifold. The research will categorize the different contributing factors under the following headings: (i) problems related to the justiciability of international law as such; (ii) problems specifically related to the educational field; (iii) problems related to policy issues in the refugee debate. By categorizing the reasons contributing to the difficult enforceability of the right to education and the rights in education for refugees, this research hopes to facilitate the search for solutions to this delicate problem.

Keywords: Refugees, Discrimination, Right to Education, enforceability of human rights

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22 Outputs from the Implementation of 'PHILOS' Programme: Emergency Health Response to Refugee Crisis, Greece, 2017

Authors: K. Mellou, C. Botsi, A. Terzidis, G. Anastopoulos, T. Zakinthinos


‘PHILOS – Emergency health response to refugee crisis’ is a programme of the Greek Ministry of Health, implemented by the Hellenic Center for Disease Control and Prevention (HCDCP). The programme is funded by the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund (AMIF) of EU’s DG Migration and Home Affairs. With the EU Member States accepting, the last period, accelerating migration flows, Greece inevitably occupies a prominent position in the migratory map due to this geographical location. The main objectives of the programme are a) reinforcement of the capacity of the public health system and enhancement of the epidemiological surveillance in order to cover refugees/migrant population, b) provision of on-site primary health care and psychological support services, and c) strengthening of national health care system task-force. The basic methods for achieving the aforementioned goals are: a) implementation of syndromic surveillance system at camps and enhancement of public health response with the use of mobile medical units (Sub-action A), b) enhancement of health care services inside the camps via increasing human resources and implementing standard operating procedures (Sub-action B), and c) reinforcement of the national health care system (primary healthcare units, hospitals, and emergency care spots) of affected regions with personnel (Sub-action C). As a result, 58 health professionals were recruited under sub-action 2 and 10 mobile unit teams (one or two at each health region) were formed. The main actions taken so far by the mobile units are the evaluation, of syndromic surveillance, of living conditions at camps and medical services. Also, vaccination coverage of children population was assessed, and more than 600 catch-up vaccinations were performed by the end of June 2017. Mobile units supported transportation of refugees/migrants from camps to medical services reducing the load of the National Center for Emergency Care (more than 350 transportations performed). The total number of health professionals (MD, nurses, etc.) placed at camps was 104. Common practices were implemented in the recording and collection of psychological and medical history forms at the camps. Protocols regarding maternity care, gender based violence and handling of violent incidents were produced and distributed at personnel working at camps. Finally, 290 health care professionals were placed at primary healthcare units, public hospitals and the National Center for Emergency Care at affected regions. The program has, also, supported training activities inside the camps and resulted to better coordination of offered services on site.

Keywords: Public Health, Primary Care, Refugees, migrants, syndromic surveillance, national health care system, emergency health response

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21 The Socioeconomic and Moral Impacts of the Syrian Refugees to Turkey

Authors: Inci Aksu Kargin


The civil war which began in the Daraa province of Syria in March 2011, has caused thousands of Syrians to die and millions more to seek refuge in other countries such as Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq, and Egypt. In order to understand the Syrian refugees’ living conditions and the problems they have experienced in Turkey in-depth, and to analyze how the arrival of the Syrian refugees in Turkey has affected the local people who live in Turkish-Syrian border, this study employed interviews, which were conducted with three different groups. First, 60 Syrian refugees, who have settled in Hatay and Gaziantep, were interviewed. Then, the Turkish government institutions, and NGOs, which are responsible for assisting the refugees, were interviewed. These interviews revealed that many Syrian refugees have encountered with several issues such as access to labor and housing markets as well as free healthcare and public education services. Second, 60 Turkish citizens living in Hatay and Gaziantep provinces were interviewed. These interviews shed light on the many issues (e.g., increase of unemployment, increase in the rental and sale prices of the houses, decrease in the quality of healthcare services, increase in traffic problems, problems with regard to the usage of parks and gardens) that Turkish citizens began experiencing after mass asylum claim of the Syrian refugees to Turkey. In addition to these, the existing social problems in Turkey such as child labor, begging, child brides, and illegal marriages (religious marriages) worsen.

Keywords: Migration, Turkey, Refugees, Syrian civil war

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20 Mental Health and Secondary Trauma in Service Providers Working with Refugees

Authors: Marko Živanović, Jovana Bjekić, Maša Vukčević Marković


Professionals and volunteers involved in refugee protection and support are on a daily basis faced with people who have experienced numerous traumatic experiences and, as such, are subjected to secondary traumatization (ST). The aim of this study was to provide insight into risk factors for ST in helpers working with refugees in Serbia. A total of 175 participants working with refugees fulfilled: Secondary Traumatization Questionnaire, checklist of refugees’ traumatic experiences, Hopkins Symptoms Checklist (HSCL) assessing depression and anxiety symptoms, quality of life questionnaire (MANSA), HEXACO personality inventory, and COPE assessing coping mechanisms. In addition, participants provided information on work-related problems. Qualitative analysis of answers to the question about most difficult part of their job has shown that burnout-related issues are clustered around three recurrent topics that can be considered as the most prominent generators of stress, namely: ‘lack of organization and cooperation’, ‘not been able to do enough’, and ‘hard to take it and to process it’. Factor analysis (Maximum likelihood extraction, Promax rotation) have shown that ST comprises of two correlated factors (r = .533, p < .01), namely Psychological deficits and Intrusions. Results have shown that risk factor for ST could be find in three interrelated sources: 1) work-related problems; 2) personality-related risk factors and 3) clients’ traumatic experiences. Among personality related factors, it was shown that risk factor for Intrusions could be find in – high Emotionality (β = .221, p < .05), and Altruism (β = .322, p < .01), while low Extraversion (β = -.365, p < .01) represents risk factor for Psychological deficits. In addition, usage of maladaptive coping mechanisms –mental disengagement (r = .253, p < .01), behavioral disengagement (r = .274, p < .01), focusing on distress and venting of emotions (r = .220, p < .05), denial (r = .164, p < .05), and substance use (r = .232, p < .01) correlate with Psychological deficits while Intrusions corelate with Mental disengagement (r = .251, p < .01) and denial (r = .183, p < .05). Regarding clients’ traumatic experiences it was shown that both quantity of traumatic events in country of origin (for Deficits r = .226, p < .01; for Intrusions r = .174, p < .05) and in transit (for Deficits r = .288, p < .01), as well as certain content-related features of such experiences (especially experiences which are severely dislocated from ‘everyday reality’) are related to ST. In addition, Psychological deficits and Intrusions have shown to be accompanied by symptoms of depression (r = .760, p < .01; r = .552, p < .01) and anxiety (r = .740, p < .01; r = .447, p < .01) and overall lower life quality (r = -.454, p < .01; r = .256, p < .01). Results indicate that psychological vulnerability of persons who are working with traumatized individuals can be found in certain personality traits, and usage of maladaptive coping mechanisms, which disable one to deal with work-related issues, and to cope with quantity and quality of traumatic experiences they were faced with, affecting ones’ psychological well-being. Acknowledgement: This research was funded by IRC Serbia.

Keywords: Mental Health, Refugees, secondary traumatization, traumatic experiences

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19 European Refugee Camps and the Right to an Adequate Standard of Living: Advancing Accountability under International Human Rights Law

Authors: Genevieve Zingg


Since the onset of the 2015 ‘refugee crisis’ in the European Union (EU), migrant deaths have overwhelmingly occurred in the Mediterranean Sea. However, far less attention has been paid to the startling number of injuries, deaths, and allegations of systematic human rights violations occurring within European refugee camps. Most troubling is the assertion that injuries and deaths in EU refugee camps have occurred as a result of negligent management and poor access to healthcare, food, water and sanitation, and other elements that comprise an adequate standard of living under international human rights law. Using available evidence and documentation, this paper will conduct a thorough examination of the causes of death and injury in EU refugee camps, with a specific focus on Greece, in order to identify instances of negligence or conditions that amount to potential breaches of human rights law. Based on its analysis, this paper will subsequently explore potential legal avenues to achieving justice and accountability under international human rights law in order to effectively address and remedy inadequate standards of living causing wrongful death or injury in European refugee camps.

Keywords: Migration, Human Rights, Refugees, European Union, International Human Rights Law, Greece

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18 Service Provision in 'the Jungle': Describing Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Offered to Residents of the Calais Camp

Authors: Amy Darwin, Claire Blacklock


Background: Existing literature about delivering evidence-based mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) in emergency settings is limited. It is difficult to monitor and evaluate the approach to MHPSS in informal refugee camps such as ‘The Jungle’ in Calais, where there are multiple service providers and where the majority of providers are volunteers. AIM: To identify experiences of MHPSS delivery by service providers in an informal camp environment in Calais, France and describe MHPSS barriers and opportunities in this type of setting. Method: Qualitative semi-structured interviews were conducted with 13 individuals from different organisations offering MHPSS in Calais and analysed using conventional content analysis. Results: Unsafe, uncertain and unsanitary conditions in the camp meant MHPSS was difficult to implement, and such conditions contributed to the poor mental health of the residents. The majority of MHPSS was offered by volunteers who lacked resources and training, and there was no overall official camp leadership which meant care was poorly coordinated and monitored. Strong relationships existed between volunteers and camp residents, but volunteers felt frustrated that they could not deliver the kind of MHPSS that they felt residents required. Conclusion: While long-term volunteers had built supportive relationships with camp residents, lack of central coordination and leadership of MHPSS services and limited access to trained professionals made implementation of MHPSS problematic. Similarly, the camp lacked the necessary infrastructure to meet residents’ basic needs. Formal recognition of the camp, and clear central leadership were identified as necessary steps to improving MHPSS delivery.

Keywords: Mental Health, Refugees, calais, the jungle, MHPSS

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17 A Phenomenological Study on the Role of Civil Society Organizations in Supporting Urban Refugees in Thailand

Authors: Rowena Clemino Alcoba


Thailand is host to the largest number of refugees in the region. The country has been one of the most accessible points of entry to refugees around the world because it has relatively lenient visa requirements, enabling asylum seekers to enter the country and subsequently search for legal assistance. However, because Thailand is not a signatory to the 1951 Geneva Convention on Refugees which governs the refugee status determination and safeguards several rights of the refugees, there are no national laws or administrative framework on the protection of refugees. Refugees are considered as illegal migrants, and certain groups are permitted to stay temporarily only upon executive discretion. Aside from the documented group of refugees from the Myanmar border, there are many others who came from different parts of the world. They are known as urban refugees believed to be in the thousands and are scattered in the impoverished areas of Bangkok and the suburbs. This study aims to advance understanding of the role of civil society organizations in supporting refugees, with particular focus on urban refugees. Using the method of triangulation in qualitative research, the study investigates the life journey of a refugee family from Pakistan, their difficulties and struggles to survive in perilous situations. The study presents the dynamics of how civil society works and collaborates to fill the gap for much-needed social services. It also discusses the depth and scope of the role of faith actors in the protection and support of this vulnerable sector. The engagement of civil society reveals framework and structure that aims to create long-term impact. The help provided is not merely monetary or material dole-outs but a platform for refugees to integrate with community, develop skills and make productive use of their time.

Keywords: Civil Society, Refugees, asylum seeker, faith actors

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16 Displaced People in International Marriage Law: Choice of Law and the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees

Authors: Rorick Daniel Tovar Galvan


The 1951 Convention relating to the status of refugees contains a conflict of law rule for the determination of the applicable law to marriage. The wording of this provision leaves much to be desired as it uses the domicile and the residence of the spouses as single main and subsidiary connecting factors. In cases where couples live in different countries, the law applicable to the case is unclear. The same problem arises when refugees are married to individuals outside of the convention’s scope of application. Different interpretations of this legal provision have arisen to solve this problem. Courts in a number of European countries apply the so-called modification doctrine: states should apply their domestic private international rules in all cases involving refugees. Courts shall, however, replace the national connecting factor by the domicile or residence in situations where nationality is used to determine the applicable law. The internal conflict of law rule will then be slightly modified in order to be applied according to the convention. However, this approach excludes these people from using their national law if they so desire. As nationality is, in all cases, replaced by domicile or residence as connecting factor, refugees are automatically deprived of the possibility to choose this law in jurisdictions that include the party autonomy in international marriage law. This contribution aims to shed light on the international legal framework applicable to marriages celebrated by refugees and the unnecessary restrictions to the exercise of the party autonomy these individuals are subjected to. The interest is motivated by the increasing number of displaced people, the significant number of states party to the Refugee Convention – approximately 150 – and the fact that more and more countries allow choice of law agreements in marriage law. Based on a study of German, Spanish and Swiss case law, the current practices in Europe, as well as some incoherencies derived from the current interpretation of the convention, will be discussed. The main objective is showing that there is neither an economic nor a legal basis to deny refugees the right to choose the law of their country of origin in those jurisdictions providing for this possibility to other foreigners. Quite the contrary, after analyzing other provisions contained in the conventions, this restriction would mean a contravention of other obligations included in the text.

Keywords: Refugees, Conflict of Laws, international marriage law, choice of law

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15 Promoting Community Food Security and Empowerment among Somali Bantu Refugees: A Case for Community Kitchen Gardens

Authors: Michelle D. Hand, Michelle L. Kaiser


African refugees are among the fastest-growing populations in the United States and nearly half of these refugees come from Somalia, many of whom are Somali Bantus, the most marginalized group in Somali society. Yet limited research is available on Somali Bantu refugees. In this paper, Empowerment Theory is used to guide an in-depth exploration of the potential benefits of using community kitchen gardens to increase community food security among Somali Bantu refugees. In addition, recommendations for future research, policy and practice are offered following existing scholarly and grey source literature guidelines as informed by an Empowerment perspective to best meet the needs of this under-researched and underserved yet growing population.

Keywords: Refugees, food insecurity, community kitchen gardens, Somali Bantu

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14 Walls against Legal Identity: A Qualitative Study on Children of Refugees without Birth Registration in Malaysia

Authors: Rodziana M. Razali, Tamara J. Duraisingham


Malaysia is not a signatory to the 1951 Refugee Convention and its 1967 Protocol despite receiving the largest share of refugee inflows in Southeast Asia aside from Thailand. In Peninsular Malaysia, the majority of refugees and asylum seekers are from Myanmar, with Rohingya refugees recording the highest number compared to all other ethnicities. In the eastern state of Sabah, the presence of refugees who have long established themselves in the state is connected to those who escaped military persecution in southern Philippines in the 1970’s and 1980’s. A combination of legal and non-legal factors has created and sustained an adverse atmosphere of deprivation of legal identity for children of migrants including refugees born in Malaysia. This paper aims to qualitatively analyse the barriers to birth registration as the cornerstone of every person’s legal identity for children of refugees born in this country, together with the associated human rights implications. Data obtained through semi-structured interviews with refugees in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah and Rohingya refugees in Peninsular Malaysia shall be studied alongside secondary sources. Results show that births out of medical facilities, suspension of birth records, illiteracy, lack of awareness on the importance and procedures of birth registration, inability to meet documentary requirements, as well as fear of immigration enforcement, are the key factors hindering birth registration. These challenges exist against the backdrop of restrictive integration policy to avoid destabilising demographic and racial balance, political sentiment stirring xenophobic prejudices, as well as other economic and national security considerations. With no proof of their legal identity, the affected children grow up in a legal limbo, facing multiple human rights violations across generations. This research concludes that the country’s framework and practice concerning birth registration is in need of serious reform and improvement to reflect equality and universality of access to its birth registration system. Such would contribute significantly towards meeting its commitments to the post-2015 sustainable development agenda that pledges to 'Leave no one behind', as well as its recently announced National Human Rights Action Plan.

Keywords: Children, Refugees, Malaysia, birth registration

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13 Community Interpreting in the Process of Asylum Seeking in Brazil

Authors: Fernanda Garcia


With the recent growth of refugees in the world, there has been an exponential increase in requests for asylum seeking in Brazil. When asylum seekers arrive in the country, the government initiates a process to evaluate the case, which will serve as grounds to determine the refugee status of the asylum seekers. During this process, an interview where the migrant has the chance to tell their story takes place. The aim of this article is to analyse how community interpreting is conducted in Brazil with regard to asylum seeking, as well as to analyse the role of the interpreter in the context of these official interviews to request refuge in Brazil. We investigate how the presence of an interpreter influences this interview, but more specifically, we study some of the linguistic techniques used by the interpreter in order to make the interaction more effective, as well as the challenges and difficulties they encounter during the interview. To do so, surveys with the interpreters took place, in addition to on-site observations. The interpreters involved in this research are volunteers as part of an extra-curricular extension programme from the University of Brasilia, in Brazil. Community Interpreting is a somewhat new field in Brazil, still facing several obstacles, such as the lack of professional community interpreters. This research illustrates some of these issues and, thus, has the potential to foster Brazilian literature in the matter as well as help understand the role of the interpreter in the interview to seek asylum in Brazil. The refugees’ situation in the world is certainly a pressing matter, and the language barrier is an issue of great importance. Hence, translation and interpretation studies have a fundamental role in this area, when it comes to contributing to a more inclusive world to those in need.

Keywords: Refugees, interviews, community interpreting, asylum seeking

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12 The Psychological Impact of War Trauma on Refugees

Authors: Anastasia Papachristou, Anastasia Ntikoudi, Vasileios Saridakis


The safety and health care needs of refugees have become an increasingly important issue all over the world especially during last few decades. Wars are the primary reason for refugees to leave their countries. Moreover, refugees are frequently exposed to a variety of stressors such as socioeconomic disadvantages, poverty, changes in family structure and functioning, losing social support, difficulty to access education, living in very crowded places, experiencing racism and isolation. This systematic review included research studies published between 2007-2017 from the search databases Medline, Scopus, Cinahl and PubMed, with keywords 'war survivors', 'war trauma', 'psychiatric disorders', 'refugees'. In order to meet the purpose of the systematic review, further research for complementary studies was conducted into the literature references of the research articles included in this study that would meet the criteria. Overall, 14 studies were reviewed and evaluated. The majority of them demonstrated that the most common psychiatric disorders observed among war refugees are post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, anxiety and multiple somatic complaints. Moreover, significant relationship was shown between the number of traumatic events experienced by the refugees and sociodemographic features such as gender, age and previous family history of any psychological disorder. War violence is highly traumatic, causing multiple, long-term negative outcomes such as the aforementioned psychiatric disorders. The number of the studies reviewed in this systematic review is not representative of the problem and its significance. The need for care of the survivors and their families is vital. Further research is necessary in order to clarify the role of predictive factors in the development and maintenance of post-traumatic stress and the rest psychiatric disorders following war trauma. In conclusion, it is necessary to have large multicenter studies in the future in order to be able to draw reliable conclusions about the effects of war.

Keywords: Psychiatric Disorders, Refugees, war survivors, war trauma

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11 Ethnic Xenophobia as Symbolic Politics: An Explanation of Anti-Migrant Activity from Brussels to Beirut

Authors: Annamarie Rannou, Horace Bartilow


Global concerns about xenophobic activity are on the rise across developed and developing countries. And yet, social science scholarship has almost exclusively examined xenophobia as a prejudice of advanced western nations. This research argues that the fields of study related to xenophobia must be re-conceptualized within a framework of ethnicity in order to level the playing field for cross-regional inquiry. This study develops a new concept of ethnic xenophobia and integrates existing explanations of anti-migrant expression into theories of ethnic threat. We argue specifically that political elites convert economic, political, and social threats at the national level into ethnic xenophobic activity in order to gain or maintain political advantage among their native selectorate. We expand on Stuart Kaufman’s theory of symbolic politics to underscore the methods of mobilization used against migrants and the power of elite discourse in moments of national crises. An original dataset is used to examine over 35,000 cases of ethnic xenophobic activity targeting refugees. Wordscores software is used to develop a unique measure of anti-migrant elite rhetoric which captures the symbolic discourse of elites in their mobilization of ethnic xenophobic activism. We use a Structural Equation Model (SEM) to test the causal pathways of the theory across seventy-two developed and developing countries from 1990 to 2016. A framework of Most Different Systems Design (MDSD) is also applied to two pairs of developed-developing country cases, including Kenya and the Netherlands and Lebanon and the United States. This study sheds tremendous light on an underrepresented area of comparative research in migration studies. It shows that the causal elements of anti-migrant activity are far more similar than existing research suggests which has major implications for policy makers, practitioners, and academics in fields of migration protection and advocacy. It speaks directly to the mobilization of myths surrounding refugees, in particular, and the nationalization of narratives of migration that may be neutralized by the development of deeper associational relationships between natives and migrants.

Keywords: Migration, Ethnicity, Refugees, Comparative Politics, elites, symbolic politics

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10 An Analysis on Aid for Migrants: A Descriptive Analysis on Official Development Assistance During the Migration Crisis

Authors: Elena Masi, Adolfo Morrone


Migration has recently become a mainstream development sector and is currently at the forefront in institutional and civil society context. However, no consensus exists on how the link between migration and development operates, that is how development is related to migration and how migration can promote development. On one hand, Official Development Assistance is recognized to be one of the levers to development. On the other hand, the debate is focusing on what should be the scope of aid programs targeting migrants groups and in general the migration process. This paper provides a descriptive analysis on how development aid for migration was allocated in the recent past, focusing on the actions that were funded and implemented by the international donor community. In the absence of an internationally shared methodology for defining the boundaries of development aid on migration, the analysis based on lexical hypotheses on the title or on the short description of initiatives funded by several Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries. Moreover, the research describes and quantifies aid flows for each country according to different criteria. The terms migrant and refugee are used to identify the projects in accordance with the most internationally agreed definitions and only actions in countries of transit or of origin are considered eligible, thus excluding the amount sustained for refugees in donor countries. The results show that the percentage of projects targeting migrants, in terms of amount, has followed a growing trend from 2009 to 2016 in several European countries, and is positively correlated with the flows of migrants. Distinguishing between programs targeting migrants and programs targeting refugees, some specific national features emerge more clearly. A focus is devoted to actions targeting the root causes of migration, showing an inter-sectoral approach in international aid allocation. The analysis gives some tentative solutions to the lack of consensus on language on migration and development aid, and emphasizes the need to internationally agree on a criterion for identifying programs targeting both migrants and refugees, to make action more transparent and in order to develop effective strategies at the global level.

Keywords: Migration, Refugees, Time series, official development assistance, ODA

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9 Creating a Critical Digital Pedagogy Context: Challenges and Potential of Designing and Implementing a Blended Learning Intervention for Adult Refugees in Greece

Authors: Roula Kitsiou, Sofia Tsioli, Eleni Gana


The current sociopolitical realities (displacement, encampment, and resettlement) refugees experience in Greece are a quite complex issue. Their educational and social ‘integration’ is characterized by transition, insecurity, and constantly changing needs. Based on the current research data, technology and more specifically mobile phones are one of the most important resources for refugees, regardless of their levels of conventional literacy. The proposed paper discusses the challenges encountered during the design and implementation of the educational Action 16 ‘Language Education for Adult Refugees’. Action 16 is one of the 24 Actions of the Project PRESS (Provision of Refugee Education and Support Scheme), funded by the Hellenic Open University (2016-2017). Project PRESS had two main objectives: a) to address the educational and integration needs of refugees in transit, who currently reside in Greece, and b) implement research-based educational interventions in online and offline sites. In the present paper, the focus is on reflection and discussion about the challenges and the potential of integrating technology in language learning for a target-group with many specific needs, which have been recorded in field notes among other research tools (ethnographic data) used in the context of PRESS. Action 16, explores if and how technology enhanced language activities in real-time and place mediated through teachers, as well as an autonomous computer-mediated learning space (moodle platform and application) builds on and expands the linguistic, cultural and digital resources and repertoires of the students by creating collaborative face-to-face and digital learning spaces. A broader view on language as a dynamic puzzle of semiotic resources and processes based on the concept of translanguaging is adopted. Specifically, designing the blended learning environment we draw on the construct of translanguaging a) as a symbolic means to valorize students’ repertoires and practices, b) as a method to reach to specific applications of a target-language that the context brings forward (Greek useful to them), and c) as a means to expand refugees’ repertoires. This has led to the creation of a learning space where students' linguistic and cultural resources can find paths to expression. In this context, communication and learning are realized by mutually investing multiple aspects of the team members' identities as educational material designers, teachers, and students on the teaching and learning processes. Therefore, creativity, humour, code-switching, translation, transference etc. are all possible means that can be employed in order to promote multilingual communication and language learning towards raising intercultural awareness in a critical digital pedagogy context. The qualitative analysis includes critical reflection on the developed educational material, team-based reflexive discussions, teachers’ reports data, and photographs from the interventions. The endeavor to involve women and men with a refugee background into a blended learning experience was quite innovative especially for the Greek context. It reflects a pragmatist ethos of the choices made in order to respond to the here-and-now needs of the refugees, and finally it was a very challenging task that has led all actors involved into Action 16 to (re)negotiations of subjectivities and products in a creative and hopeful way.

Keywords: Language Education, Integration, Blended Learning, Refugees

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8 The Securitization of the European Migrant Crisis (2015-2016): Applying the Insights of the Copenhagen School of Security Studies to a Comparative Analysis of Refugee Policies in Bulgaria and Hungary

Authors: Tatiana Rizova


The migrant crisis, which peaked in 2015-2016, posed an unprecedented challenge to the European Union’s (EU) newest member states, including Bulgaria and Hungary. Their governments had to formulate sound migration policies with expediency and sensitivity to the needs of millions of people fleeing violent conflicts in the Middle East and failed states in North Africa. Political leaders in post-communist countries had to carefully coordinate with other EU member states on joint policies and solutions while minimizing the risk of alienating their increasingly anti-migrant domestic constituents. Post-communist member states’ governments chose distinct policy responses to the crisis, which were dictated by factors such as their governments’ partisan stances on migration, their views of the European Union, and the decision to frame the crisis as a security or a humanitarian issue. This paper explores how two Bulgarian governments (Boyko Borisov’s second and third government formed during the 43rd and 44th Bulgarian National Assembly, respectively) navigated the processes of EU migration policy making and managing the expectations of their electorates. Based on a comparative analysis of refugee policies in Bulgaria and Hungary during the height of the crisis (2015-2016) and a temporal analysis of refugee policies in Bulgaria (2015-2018), the paper advances the following conclusions. Drawing on insights of the Copenhagen school of security studies, the paper argues that cultural concerns dominated domestic debates in both Bulgaria and Hungary; both governments framed the issue predominantly as a matter of security rather than humanitarian disaster. Regardless of the similarities in issue framing, however, the two governments sought different paths of tackling the crisis. While the Bulgarian government demonstrated its willingness to comply with EU decisions (such as the proposal for mandatory quotas for refugee relocation), the Hungarian government defied EU directives and became a leading voice of dissent inside the EU. The current Bulgarian government (April 2017 - present) appears to be committed to complying with EU decisions and accepts the strategy of EU burden-sharing, while the Hungarian government has continually snubbed the EU’s appeals for cooperation despite the risk of hefty financial penalties. Hungary’s refugee policies have been influenced by the parliamentary representation of the far right-wing party Movement for a Better Hungary (Jobbik), which has encouraged the majority party (FIDESZ) to adopt harsher anti-migrant rhetoric and more hostile policies toward refugees. Bulgaria’s current government is a coalition of the center-right Citizens for a European Development of Bulgaria (GERB) and its far right-wing junior partners – the United Patriots (comprised of three nationalist political parties). The parliamentary presence of Jobbik in Hungary’s parliament has magnified the anti-migrant stance, rhetoric, and policies of Mr. Orbán’s Civic Alliance; we have yet to observe a substantial increase in the anti-migrant rhetoric and policies in Bulgaria’s case. Analyzing responses to the migrant/refugee crisis is a critical opportunity to understand how issues of cultural identity and belonging, inclusion and exclusion, regional integration and disintegration are debated and molded into policy in Europe’s youngest member states in the broader EU context.

Keywords: Security, Refugees, Copenhagen School, migrant crisis

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7 The Educational Role of Non-Governmental Organizations among Young Refugees: An Ethnographic Study

Authors: Ceyda Sensin


Chios Island in Greece hosts many refugees from the Middle East since the Turkey-EU Refugee Deal. Thus, it has become commonplace for non-governmental organizations (NGO) to provide help for refugees in various ways. The purpose of this research is to identify ways in which improvements can be made in the educational services offered to young adult refugees (age group 14-22) by the NGO’s. To meet this aim, an unstructured observational technique was used in this qualitative study. The data was collected as a participant observer in February 2018. According to the observations made in this study, it came out that international NGOs may utilize volunteering team members on an urgent basis since they are a free resource from all around the world. In this study, it was observed that the volunteering team members without any teaching qualifications or teaching experience have struggled with reaching refugee students with or without potential mental health problems from exposure to stress, turmoil and trauma. Therefore, this study highly recommends the use of more relevantly trained professionals, alongside the volunteer staff. Alternatively, the volunteer staffs need to have teacher training and periodical refresher training.

Keywords: Refugees, ethnographic study, non-governmental organizations, qualitative research method

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6 Islamic Extremist Groups' Usage of Populism in Social Media to Radicalize Muslim Migrants in Europe

Authors: Muhammad Irfan


The rise of radicalization within Islam has spawned a new era of global terror. The battlefield Successes of ISIS and the Taliban are fuelled by an ideological war waged, largely and successfully, in the media arena. This research will examine how Islamic extremist groups are using media modalities and populist narratives to influence migrant Muslim populations in Europe towards extremism. In 2014, ISIS shocked the world in exporting horrifically graphic forms of violence on social media. Their Muslim support base was largely disgusted and reviled. In response, they reconfigured their narrative by introducing populist 'hooks', astutely portraying the Muslim populous as oppressed and exploited by unjust, corrupt autocratic regimes and Western power structures. Within this crucible of real and perceived oppression, hundreds of thousands of the most desperate, vulnerable and abused migrants left their homelands, risking their lives in the hope of finding peace, justice, and prosperity in Europe. Instead, many encountered social stigmatization, detention and/or discrimination for being illegal migrants, for lacking resources and for simply being Muslim. This research will examine how Islamic extremist groups are exploiting the disenfranchisement of these migrant populations and using populist messaging on social media to influence them towards violent extremism. ISIS, in particular, formulates specific encoded messages for newly-arriving Muslims in Europe, preying upon their vulnerability. Violence is posited, as a populist response, to the tyranny of European oppression. This research will analyze the factors and indicators which propel Muslim migrants along the spectrum from resilience to violence extremism. Expected outcomes are identification of factors which influence vulnerability towards violent extremism; an early-warning detection framework; predictive analysis models; and de-radicalization frameworks. This research will provide valuable tools (practical and policy level) for European governments, security stakeholders, communities, policy-makers, and educators; it is anticipated to contribute to a de-escalation of Islamic extremism globally.

Keywords: Social Media, Islam, Terrorism, Political Communication, Refugees, Models, Europe, Extremism, migrants, Jihad, Radicalization, Islamic Extremism, Strategic Communication, Populism, predictive analysis, Taliban, Shariah, ISIS, de-radicalization, global terror, early warning detection, populist narratives

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5 Audience Engagement in UNHCR Social Media Stories of Displaced People: Emotion and Reason in a Global Public Debate

Authors: Soraya Tharani


Social media has changed how public opinion is shaped by enabling more diversified and inclusive participation of audiences. New online forums provide spaces in which governments, NGOs and other organizations can create content and receive feedback. These forums are sites where debate can constitute public opinion. Studies of audience engagement can give an understanding of how different voices from the civil society participate in debates and how discussions can reinforce or bring into question established societal beliefs. The UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, produces audio-visual stories about displaced people for global audiences on social media platforms. The availability of many views in these forums can give insight into how dialogues regarding transnational issues are formed. The public sphere, as defined by Habermas, is a discursive arena where reasoned debate can take place. Habermas’ concept is combined with theories on celebrity advocacy, and discussions about the role and effect celebrities have in raising public awareness for humanitarian issues. The personal and public lives of celebrities often create emotional engagement from their fans and other audiences. In this study, quantitative and qualitative methods have been used on YouTube comments for uncovering how emotion and reason are constituted in a global public debate on celebrity endorsed UNHCR stories of displaced people. The study shows that engagement intensity is not equally distributed between comment threads; comments presented as facts or emotional claims are often supported by recourse to intertextuality, and specific linguistic strategies are used to put forward emotional and reasoned claims regarding individual and group identities. The findings from this research aim to contribute to an understanding of audience engagement on issues of human survival and solidarity in a global social media public sphere.

Keywords: Social Media, Refugees, Engagement, Emotions, Reason, global public sphere, linguistic strategies, UNHCR

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