© Copyright, 2015 (PHNO)
 http://newsflash.org

PHNO SCIENCE & INFOTECH NEWS
(Mini Reads followed by Full Reports)

PHNO CONTINUES TO PRAY, PAY TRIBUTE TO THE LITTLE BOY, AYLAN KURVI, WASHED UP IN A TURKISH BEACH FROM A SUNKEN BOAT FLEEING  SAVAGERY FROM ISIS.

HUMANITY WASHED ASHORE
[Outpouring of grief continues for Syrian toddler Aylan Kurvi, three, after images of his dead body on a Turkish shoreline shocked the world. The Kurvi family has fled from their home city of Kobane, Syria to Turkey hoping to reach the island of Greece, to a final destination in Germany.]


SEPTEMBER 4 -LOTS MORE PHOTOS BY ARTISTS BELOW: This moving artwork depicts Aylan Kurdi lying dead on the beach as a paper boat travels off to sea' Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook The Kurvi family made it to Turkey from their home city of Kobane, Syria. Social media users have been creating poignant artworks based on the death of young Syrian refugee Aylan Kurdi The three-year-old's tiny body was pictured washed up on Turkey's Bodrum beach yesterday afternoon He drowned alongside his mother Rehan, 35, and brother Galip, five, trying to reach the Greek island of Kos. Artist Sudarsan Pattnaik has made a sand sculpture of the image of Aylan lying face down which horrified the world. CONTINUE READING...

ALSO: ISLAMIC STATE THREAT TO KOBANE


SEPTEMBER 4 -Islamic State fighters battled for four months to seize Kobane, Syria, in last year, but Kurdish fighters backed by US-led air strikes seized back control in January in a symbolic defeat for the jihadists. However, Kurds have been fleeing the city, often making treacherous journeys across the Mediterranean Sea to make it to mainland Europe. In June, ISIS fighters attacked their city, detonating a suicide bomb and battling Kurdish forces in the streets. Civilians and Kurdish fighters were killed as the terror group attacked the town on three sides after reportedly coming across the border from Turkey.  CONTINUE READING...MORE PHOTOS No entry: This poignant image shows how physical and metaphorical walls that block many young migrant from entering Europe effectively leave children like Aylan at great risk....

ALSO CONFLICT: Aylan Kurdi's Mother Revealed Family's Destination was Germany in Final Phone Call


SEPTEMBER 9 -Aylan and Rehan Kurdi: Aylan Kurdi is held by his mother, Rehan Kurdi. Both mother and son died when the boat they were in capsized as they attempted to get to Greece.Sexo Seno Kurdi
FILED UNDER: Conflict: The Syrian mother who died at sea with her two sons attempting to reach the Greek mainland earlier this week revealed that the family's final destination was Germany in a heartbreaking final phone-call a day before their tragic deaths, her father told Newsweek in an exclusive interview late Thursday. Sexo Seno Kurdi, the grandfather of Aylan and Galip Kurdi, the brothers photographed washed up on a Turkish beach on Wednesday, said that after his conversation with his daughter, Rehan, who dreamed of a new life in Europe, the next call he would receive would be to deliver the horrifying news that she was dead at sea. "The day before she drowned she talked to me and said that their end destination was Germany and that they would take the boat either in the morning or the day after," says Kurdi, crying in his house in Kobane. "The next telephone call was about how they had drowned. My daughter had drowned, she jumped after her children."  READ MORE...

ALSO: ISIS In Hungary?
[As refugees enter Europe, Officials fear Islamic State Militants could be among them]


SEPTEMBER 9 -As European officials express growing concern about security and ISIS militants' posing as refugees, a Hungarian policeman watches refugees near a collection point in the village of Roszke Sep. 9, 2015. Reuters/Marko Djurica European officials have expressed increasing concern that militants from the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, are posing as refugees to enter the European Union as those countries take in hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and beyond, fleeing civil wars and violence. Media reports appear to have bolstered those fears, with Hungarian media reporting Tuesday that “Islamist terrorists, disguised as refugees, have showed up in Europe,” RT reported.
"Pictures were uploaded on various social networks to show that terrorists are now present in most European cities," Hungarian M1 television reported. "Many, who are now illegal immigrants, fought alongside Islamic State before," it added. It was unclear if the suspected militants had been arrested or detained. Hungary has come under the spotlight in recent weeks for trying to stem the tide of refugees from the Middle East and North Africa, including by preventing them from boarding trains to Germany, Al Jazeera reported. At the same time, the possibility that militants and fighters could be scattered among humanitarian refugees presents a serious concern for European cities and countries. READ MORE...

ALSO Analysis: Syria’s refugees are a golden opportunity for Europe; Germany has just closed its borders
[In light of Europe’s anemic economic recovery, the current refugee crisis, while founded in misery, may be vital to the EU’s future. The data, at least, are supportive. But in facing down the tide of panic that grips many EU states, good data may not be enough]


SEPTEMBER 15 - group of Migrants in Macedonia, near its border with Greece Photograph by Ognen Teofilovski--Reuters Europe’s current refugee crisis pales in comparison to what the Middle East has faced for years. Nevertheless, European states have an opportunity to turn tragedy into opportunity—if only they have the vision to do so. So much for sanctuary in Germany—at least for the moment. Over the weekend, the nation closed its borders, turning back refugees and halting Austrian trains carrying thousands of asylum seekers. The open-door policy of Europe’s largest economy has its limits: More than 13,000 refugees had flooded Munich on Saturday alone. The emergency order from the German government was a temporary move, according to Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, an opportunity to handle the refugee influx in a more orderly fashion. However, the dramatic suspension of the borderless Schengen Zone—which allows passport-free movement among 26 European states—appears to have been contagious: Austria, Slovakia, and the Netherlands have followed suit; Hungary and the Czech Republic also increased border controls; and France, Poland, and Sweden are considering similar moves. More than 25 years after the Iron Curtain fell, the walls appear to be going back up. It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Germany has been expected to welcome 800,000 refugees this year, many from war-wracked Syria, making it the standout among Western developed countries. By contrast, the Obama Administration has pledged that the U.S. will resettle 10,000 Syrian asylum seekers, at least eventually: The process will almost certainly take years, given rigorous background check and security requirements. The panic gripping the EU appeared to accelerate after a meeting of interior ministers in Brussels on Monday failed to come up with a plan, deferring action to the member states. READ MORE....

ALSO: 30 sponsored Syrian refugees land at Toronto airport


SEPTEMBER 16 -Canada AM: An emotional journey....WATCH VIDEO BOTTOM OF PAGE... A group of more than 30 refugees from Syria landed at Toronto Pearson International Airport Tuesday morning, where they were greeted with hugs, kisses and tears of joy. Some had spent two years navigating through Canada’s refugee application process, until they got approval to connect with relatives here. Dareen Soro, along with her husband and two kids, said she was relieved to finally be able to start a new life in London, Ont., almost five years after fleeing to Lebanon. Soro said she plans to enroll her children, ages seven and nine, in school next week. “Hopefully the future for them is bright,” she added, speaking through an interpreter. Aris Babikian, who sponsored a Syrian family, called it a “dream come true” that they had “finally” arrived. He said all of the refugees have been through difficulty. “Any moment a bomb can explode,” he said, adding, “they don’t have work; they don’t have a life.” “If it wasn’t for the generous program that the government brought we would not be able to bring these people,” Babikian said. READ MORE....


READ FULL MEDIA REPORTS:

Humanity washed ashore
Outpouring of grief continues for Syrian toddler Aylan, three, after images of his dead body on a Turkish shoreline shocked the world


Indian artist Sudarsan Pattnaik works on a sand sculpture depicting drowned Syrian boy Aylan Kurdi, three, at Puri beach, some 65 kilometers from Bhubaneswar in eastern India

CULLED BY PHNO ONLINE, SEPTEMBER 21, 2015 (DAILY MAIL UK) POSTED ON SEPTEMBER 4, 2015 By JOHN HALL and TIM MACFARLAN FOR DAILY MAIL ONLINE - Social media users have been creating poignant artworks based on the death of young Syrian refugee Aylan Kurdi.

The three-year-old's tiny body was pictured washed up on Turkey's Bodrum beach yesterday afternoon.

He drowned alongside his mother Rehan, 35, and brother Galip, five, trying to reach the Greek island of Kos

READ MORE...

Slumped in the sand just like the real body of the young boy it depicts, this sculpture is one of thousands of emotional responses which have poured out across the globe to the shocking images of dead Syrian refugee Aylan Kurdi.

Indian artist Sudarsan Pattnaik created the sand sculpture of the three-year-old at Puri beach, 65 kilometers from Bhubaneswar in eastern India.

The words written below, 'Humanity washed ashore. SHAME SHAME SHAME...,' encapsulate the horror felt by all who have seen the pictures of Aylan face down in the sand of Turkey's Bodrum beach after he drowned alongside his mother Rehan, 35, and brother Galip, five.

The desperate family - who fled the ISIS-besieged Syrian city of Kobane - were on an overcrowded dinghy bound for the Greek island of Kos when it capsized. The boys' father Abdullah survived.

On social media, users have created moving and poignant artworks in response to the tragedy, with many portraying the tragic little boy as an angel.


Grief: Reacting to the tragedy, social media users have created moving and poignant artworks based around the photographs of Aylan's tiny body - with many portraying the tragic little boy as an angel


In a moving image, the photo of Aylan is edited to show a tiny angel with wings leaving his body and being carried into heaven by his late mother.

In this moving image, the photograph of the little boy is edited to show a tiny angel with wings leaving his body and being carried into heaven by a woman, presumably his late mother.

Another shows him with black balloons in his left hand. TRANSLATION OF ARABIC TEXT = 'THE END'.


This image made a political point about how few Syrian refugees have been accepted by Middle Eastern nations. It shows men wearing traditional Arab dress standing over Aylan's body. The caption reads: 'Refugees welcomed by: Saudi: 0, Kuwait: 0, Qatar: 0, Emirates: 0, Bahrain: 0 #FreeSyria #SyriaCrisis'


Political: This image depicts Aylan rising into heaven along with the caption: 'I hope humanity finds a cure for visas'


Many of the tribute images are pencil illustrations depicting Aylan lying dead on Bodrum beach while a local gendarme stands over his body.

The photograph was shared online by Twitter user Sherry Aziz, who captioned it: 'God be with you and all the other little angels #FreeSyria'.


Another painted image shows Aylan as an angel lying face down in the sand, white feathers at his feet and a red rose clutched in his right hand.


The picture was shared on Twitter by HA Hellyer, who wrote: 'May we all be forgiven for failing to help this beautiful child. RIP'.


In this images shows little Aylan with black balloons in his left hand, the words 'The End' hover over the little boy.

The image has also been used by Arabic-speaking social media users who used it to make a political point about how few Syrian refugees have been accepted by Middle Eastern nations.

One shows men wearing traditional Arab dress standing over Aylan. The caption reads: 'Refugees welcomed by: Saudi: 0, Kuwait: 0, Qatar: 0, Emirates: 0, Bahrain: 0 #FreeSyria #SyriaCrisis'

The artwork on the left depicts Aylan Kurdi drowning in the Mediterranean Sea while holding up a paper boat, while the simple pen-drawn image on the right shows him in the arms of an angel

Many of the artworks attempted to portray Aylan sleeping in a bed - a far cry for the harrowing scenes on the beach at Bodrum


Many of the artworks attempted to portray Aylan sleeping in a bed - a far cry for the harrowing scenes on the beach at Bodrum



Moving and poignant: Using the same shot of Aylan this image shows him lying against a grave stone. The words 'The End' hover over the little boy

Earlier the boys' aunt spoke for the first time of the moment the boys' grief-stricken father Abdullah Kurdi called relatives after the tragedy, managing only to say: 'My wife and two boys are dead.'

Heartbreaking new photographs also emerged of Galip and Aylan this morning - including one showing the boys smiling and laughing as they sit together alongside a large teddy bear.

Aylan and Galip, who were not wearing lifejackets, did not stand a chance when the boat overturned in the dead of night, some 30 minutes after it set off from the holiday resort of Bodrum in Turkey.

All 17 passengers were flung into the Mediterranean, and despite the calm water, Galip and Aylan drowned.

Their lifeless bodies, still clad in tiny T-shirts and shorts, washed up on Ali Hoca Point Beach in Bodrum today and boatmen alerted the authorities.

A heartbreaking photograph of a Turkish gendarme cradling one of the boys in his arms emerged shortly after the tragedy and video footage showed the body of the second.


The human cost: A policeman on a Turkish beach gently recovers the bodies of two brothers drowned as their family tried to make their way to the Greek island of Kos yesterday


Harrowing: The young boy, named as Aylan Kurdi, is just one of almost 3,000 migrants who have already died this year in the Mediterranean


Heartbreaking: The bodies of Aylan, three (left) and his brother Galip, five (right) washed up on the shores of the Mediterranean. This photo shows the boys when they were younger, according to a Syrian journalist


Smiles: Galip and Aylan Kurdi (pictured) hail from the ISIS-besieged Syrian city of Kobane. According to relatives, their father now wants to return to the city to bury the two boys and their mother

VIDEO:Aunt, in Vancouver, BC of drown Syrian kids: They were going for a better life......
CLICK THIS LINK TO WATCH: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3222829/Outpouring-grief-continues-images-Syrian-toddler-Aylan-Kurdi-s-dead-body-Turkey.html#v-4462189538001  OR,

WATCH EMBEDDED VIDEO:



The boys' aunt has now spoken of the moment a heartbroken Abdullah Kurdi telephoned relatives to tell them about the tragedy.

'I heard the news at five o'clock in this morning,' Vancouver-based Teema Kurdi told National Post.

She said that learned of the tragedy through a telephone call from Ghuson Kurdi, the wife of another brother, Mohammad, who had spoken with the bereaved father.

'She had got a call from Abdullah, and all he said was, 'my wife and two boys are dead',' she explained.

She added that Mr Kurdi now plans to return to the family's war torn home town of Kobane in order to lay the boys and their mother to rest. He said he wants to be buried alongside them.

According to local reports the boats were part of a flotilla of dinghys that were boarded at an inlet before puttering out to the sea off Akyarlar – the nearest point from Turkey to the island of Kos.

Another dinghy among the flotilla, which was carrying a further 16 refugees to Kos, also capsized.
 


ISLAMIC STATE (ISIS) THREAT TO KOBANE


Map of location of Kobane, Syria Updated 6 Oct 2014, 5:28pm

Islamic State fighters battled for four months to seize Kobane, Syria, in last year, but Kurdish fighters backed by US-led air strikes seized back control in January in a symbolic defeat for the jihadists.

However, Kurds have been fleeing the city, often making treacherous journeys across the Mediterranean Sea to make it to mainland Europe.

In June, ISIS fighters attacked their city, detonating a suicide bomb and battling Kurdish forces in the streets.

Civilians and Kurdish fighters were killed as the terror group attacked the town on three sides after reportedly coming across the border from Turkey.


No entry: This poignant image shows how physical and metaphorical walls that block many young migrant from entering Europe effectively leave children like Aylan at great risk


This image depicts the stark contrast between children who are able to sleep in a comfortable bed at night and Aylan, whose drowned body washed up on a Turkish beach yesterday



Twitter user Massimo Schiavon share an image suggesting Europe cares more about Aylan Kurdi's clothes than whether or not he lost his life



This image is intended to show how animals care more about the tragic refugee families than humans do.


GOOD NIGHT AYLAN, GOOD NIGHT TO YOUR MOM AND YOUR BROTHER GALIP! GOOD NIGHT! GOD LOVES AND WILL TAKE CARE OF REFUGEES FROM ISIS.


EXCLUSIVE FROM NEWSWEEK

CONFLICT: Aylan Kurdi's Mother Revealed Family's Destination Was Germany In Final Phone Call By Jack Moore 9/4/15 at 9:32 AM

Aylan and Rehan Kurdi: Aylan Kurdi is held by his mother, Rehan Kurdi. Both mother and son died when the boat they were in capsized as they attempted to get to Greece.Sexo Seno Kurdi

FILED UNDER: Conflict The Syrian mother who died at sea with her two sons attempting to reach the Greek mainland earlier this week revealed that the family's final destination was Germany in a heartbreaking final phone-call a day before their tragic deaths, her father told Newsweek in an exclusive interview late Thursday.

Sexo Seno Kurdi, the grandfather of Aylan and Galip Kurdi, the brothers photographed washed up on a Turkish beach on Wednesday, said that after his conversation with his daughter, Rehan, who dreamed of a new life in Europe, the next call he would receive would be to deliver the horrifying news that she was dead at sea.

"The day before she drowned she talked to me and said that their end destination was Germany and that they would take the boat either in the morning or the day after," says Kurdi, crying in his house in Kobane. "The next telephone call was about how they had drowned. My daughter had drowned, she jumped after her children."

READ MORE...

Relatives of the Kurdi family have claimed that they were attempting to flee to relatives in Canada as their application to emigrate to Canada had been rejected by the Canadian government.

However, Ottawa denied that it had received any citizenship application from the father Abdullah Kurdi, who survived the failed attempt to reach the Greek island of Kos from the Turkish port city of Bodrum, late Thursday.

Regardless of the presence of a citizenship application, it appears as if the Kurdi family were attempting to make their way to Greece to move on to Germany, where thousands of Syrian refugees have successfully arrived from the war-torn country.

Abdullah moved to the Syrian capital, Damascus, to work as a hairdresser with the family but they returned to Kobane four years ago near the onset of the Syrian civil war.

They stayed in Kobane for three years and fled to Turkey when ISIS began their assault.

In Turkey, the family lived in Istanbul for a year where they could not find regular work, had little money and yearned for better living standards which pushed them to looking for a better life in Europe, according to Nuri Kino, the director and founder of the Middle Eastern advocacy group A Demand for Action.

The circumstances under which the Kurdi family felt they had to flee to the safe shores of Europe became even clearer as the Syrian brothers' grandfather revealed that 11 of the family's relatives had been slaughtered at the hands of the Islamic State [ISIS] in the Kurdish-Syrian city of Kobane in June, just months after the mother, father and two boys had fled to Turkey.


The father of Reham Kurdi holds up a family photo of his daughter, Rehan, his son-in-law, Abdullah, and his grandson, Aylan, in a previously unseen photograph. Dorpec Kobane

"Only a few months ago we lost 11 family members and now this. Now my daughter and grandchildren are also fallen martyrs for Kobane," says Kurdi in the Kurdish language of Kurmanji, in an interview conducted by local doctor Dorpec Kobane and facilitated by Kino.

Adnan Hassan, the cousin of both Abdullah and Rehan Kurdi, condemned the world for turning its back on Syrian refugees in another exclusive interview in the Syrian city.

"Do we deserve to have our children picked up from beach shores because their parents panicked and wanted to save their children, save them from terrorism, from kidnappings, from being slaughtered?" he asks. "How long will they let our children either be killed by terrorists or drown trying to escape?"

ISIS launched an assault on Kobane almost a year ago, an offensive which was successfully defended against by Kurdish militiamen but the ultra-conservative terror group returned to attack the city in June this year, killing hundreds of civilians. Eleven were close relatives of the Kurdi family, some shot in their homes, according to Kino.

Those killed included Aylan and Galip's 60-year-old great aunt, Meryem; their parents' 22-year-old cousin Gulistan; their parents' 25-year-old cousin, Rudi; his 25-year-old wife, Pervin; their parents' 35-year-old cousin, Ahmed; and his wife Rihana, 30.

"For more than a year, we have begged the UN, the EU and Washington D.C. for safe havens, in the Nineveh Plains in Iraq and also in Kobane and Hassakah. World leaders did not listen," bemoans Kino, calling for solutions to stop the deaths of refugees such as the Kurdi family. "Now, the water between Turkey and Greece is full of dead bodies because of the lack of military, humanitarian and political support. This needs to end now."

For Abdullah and the remaining Kurdi family members in Kobane, the coming days will be filled with mourning and remembrance.

While the bodies of Aylan, Galip and Rehan have not yet been released by Turkish authorities, Abdullah is set to return to their hometown where a memorial is to be held today, according to Kino's sources in the city.

Thousands are expected to take part in a parade of the bodies of the "martyrs" through the war-weary city when they are finally released.REPORT SEPTEMBER 4, 2015


INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES ONLINE

ISIS In Hungary? As Refugees Enter Europe, Officials Fear Islamic State Militants Could Be Among Them By Elizabeth Whitman @elizabethwhitty e.whitman@ibtimes.com on September 09 2015 9:06 AM EDT


As European officials express growing concern about security and ISIS militants' posing as refugees, a Hungarian policeman watches refugees near a collection point in the village of Roszke Sep. 9, 2015. Reuters/Marko Djurica

European officials have expressed increasing concern that militants from the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, are posing as refugees to enter the European Union as those countries take in hundreds of thousands of refugees from Syria, Afghanistan and beyond, fleeing civil wars and violence. Media reports appear to have bolstered those fears, with Hungarian media reporting Tuesday that “Islamist terrorists, disguised as refugees, have showed up in Europe,” RT reported.

"Pictures were uploaded on various social networks to show that terrorists are now present in most European cities," Hungarian M1 television reported. "Many, who are now illegal immigrants, fought alongside Islamic State before," it added. It was unclear if the suspected militants had been arrested or detained.

Hungary has come under the spotlight in recent weeks for trying to stem the tide of refugees from the Middle East and North Africa, including by preventing them from boarding trains to Germany, Al Jazeera reported. At the same time, the possibility that militants and fighters could be scattered among humanitarian refugees presents a serious concern for European cities and countries.

READ MORE...

The right-wing British politician Nigel Farage suggested Friday that the refugee crisis could endanger the country and continent, as there was "very genuine fear" that Islamic State militants could use the flow of refugees to their advantage and enter the European continent.

“At the moment, the EU’s common asylum policy has absolutely no means whatsoever of checking anybody’s background, and I would say we must not allow our compassion to imperil our safety,” he said, the Telegraph reported.

Experts have suggested that European officials should be vigilant about possible militant threats but also remain aware that Europe's borders have long been relatively porous, and refugees have sought asylum within them for years.

“It’s a concern that people at borders are always going to have to be vigilant about and at the same time grapple with,” Sean Kay, a professor of international relations at Ohio Wesleyan University, told International Business Times Tuesday.

Others suggested that the outpouring of refugees represented a religious victory for the Islamic State group, which controls large swaths of Iraq and Syria.

As the militant group drives Muslim and Christian men, women and children from their homes and out of their countries, "if all these refugees come to Europe or elsewhere, then Islamic State has won," French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said Tuesday. He called for the Middle East to remain what he defined as "a region of diversity where there are Christians, Yazidis, etc."


FORTUNE  ONLINE ANALYSIS

Syria’s refugees are a golden opportunity for Europe by Keith Proctor SEPTEMBER 15, 2015, 4:19 PM EDT E-mail Tweet Facebook Linkedin Share icons


A group of Migrants in Macedonia, near its border with Greece Photograph by Ognen Teofilovski--Reuters

Europe’s current refugee crisis pales in comparison to what the Middle East has faced for years. Nevertheless, European states have an opportunity to turn tragedy into opportunity—if only they have the vision to do so.

So much for sanctuary in Germany—at least for the moment. Over the weekend, the nation closed its borders, turning back refugees and halting Austrian trains carrying thousands of asylum seekers. The open-door policy of Europe’s largest economy has its limits: More than 13,000 refugees had flooded Munich on Saturday alone.

The emergency order from the German government was a temporary move, according to Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, an opportunity to handle the refugee influx in a more orderly fashion.

However, the dramatic suspension of the borderless Schengen Zone—which allows passport-free movement among 26 European states—appears to have been contagious: Austria, Slovakia, and the Netherlands have followed suit; Hungary and the Czech Republic also increased border controls; and France, Poland, and Sweden are considering similar moves. More than 25 years after the Iron Curtain fell, the walls appear to be going back up.

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Germany has been expected to welcome 800,000 refugees this year, many from war-wracked Syria, making it the standout among Western developed countries. By contrast, the Obama Administration has pledged that the U.S. will resettle 10,000 Syrian asylum seekers, at least eventually: The process will almost certainly take years, given rigorous background check and security requirements. The panic gripping the EU appeared to accelerate after a meeting of interior ministers in Brussels on Monday failed to come up with a plan, deferring action to the member states.

READ MORE...

The refugee crisis presents yet another test for the idea of an integrated Europe. However, the real scope of the crisis is placed in some perspective by what poorer, less populous Middle Eastern states have been forced to accommodate—with far less fanfare—for years.

Of the 4 million Syrians who’ve fled since their country’s civil war began in 2011, the vast majority have crowded into Jordan, Turkey, and Lebanon. Poor, arid Jordan hosts more than 600,000 refugees, who are sorely taxing housing markets and thirstily tapping the country’s rapidly declining water resources. Turkey’s refugee population has skyrocketed this year to almost 2 million. Worst off, perhaps, is tiny Lebanon: 1.1 million Syrians have joined a preexisting population of over 400,000 Palestinian asylum seekers. Today in Lebanon, roughly one in four people is a refugee.

Syria’s neighbors lack the financial wherewithal to handle this burden: Jordan, Turkey, and Lebanon have a combined population of 86 million and a nominal GDP of roughly $900 billion. As a point of comparison, the EU boasts a population of half a billion and a GDP of $18.4 trillion.

Perhaps Syria’s neighbors could accommodate the region’s massive displacement, given proper help. But while humanitarian aid has flowed to the region from the West, by most accounts it is insufficient. According to UNHCR, the UN’s refugee agency, the humanitarian needs of the region’s displaced Syrians tops $4.5 billion this year. International donors have only pledged about 37% of that. Little wonder, say some critics, that refugees are abandoning under-resourced camps in search of a new life in wealthy Europe.

Of course, there are reasons for Europe’s hesitation to take them: a lack of capacity to handle thousands of asylum seekers, for instance, and security concerns, particularly in the aftermath of the Paris and Copenhagen terrorist attacks earlier this year. But some of the opposition is more nationalist and cultural in flavor. In the Czech Republic, Poland, and Slovakia, thousands of protesters have flocked to demonstrations, opposing migration and chanting anti-Islamic slogans. Banners read GO HOME and ISLAM IS DEATH. Hungary’s Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, has opposed accepting Muslim refugees on religious and cultural grounds, citing his country’s occupation by the Ottoman Empire in the 16th and 17th centuries. Slovakia, similarly, has decided to only accept Christian Syrians.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, the bloc’s inability to craft a comprehensive response to the refugee influx echoes the dynamics of the European debt crisis, in which national interests have taken precedence over collective concerns.

But in this current atmosphere, too little is made of the opportunity presented by the migrants and refugees heading to Europe by train, truck, and raft. Among the refugees attempting to get in are the remnants of Syria’s middle class: doctors, engineers, and teachers fleeing Assad’s barrel bombs in Aleppo, or the reign of terror ushered in by the Islamic State. They bring vitality and opportunity to an aging European continent that badly needs it.

According to the European Commission, the graying of Europe is among the EU’s most serious social and economic challenges. More than one-fifth of Europeans will be 65 or older by 2025, placing great strain on social services and health care.

Integrating young migrants could provide a much-needed demographic boost. And unlike Jordan, Turkey, or Lebanon, Europe has far more resources to integrate them. As reported by CNBC, Pierre Moscovici, European commissioner for economic and financial affairs, has stated that the current migration and refugee crisis should not just be seen in terms of cost, but opportunity.

“It is also a resource—a human resource,” Moscovici said. “Our countries need migration … the economic impact should not just be looked at in a negative way as populists would have it.”

According to the Financial Times, Wolfgang Schäuble, Germany’s finance minister, takes a similarly warm view: The short-term costs are manageable, while the long-term benefits are potentially substantial. Migrants are, generally, a boon to labor markets. Moreover, they pay out more to the state than they take in services, according to separate pieces of research by the OECD and the Centre for European Economic Research.

In light of Europe’s anemic economic recovery, the current refugee crisis, while founded in misery, may be vital to the EU’s future. The data, at least, are supportive. But in facing down the tide of panic that grips many EU states, good data may not be enough.


CTV NEWS TORONTO

30 sponsored Syrian refugees land at Toronto airport


Canada AM: An emotional journey....WATCH VIDEO BELOW...

A group of Syrians fleeing their home country has arrived in Toronto after spending two years waiting in Lebanon. CANADA AM Scott Laurie reports.


Nazar Poladian, a newly arrived Syrian refugee, speaks on Canada AM on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. Nazar Poladian shares his message to refugees still struggling to survive and describes how coming to Canada makes all the difference.

CTV National News: Families united in Canada - Josh Dehaas, CTVNews.ca Published Tuesday, September 15, 2015 9:49PM EDT Last Updated Wednesday, September 16, 2015 12:27AM EDT

A group of more than 30 refugees from Syria landed at Toronto Pearson International Airport Tuesday morning, where they were greeted with hugs, kisses and tears of joy.

Some had spent two years navigating through Canada’s refugee application process, until they got approval to connect with relatives here.

Dareen Soro, along with her husband and two kids, said she was relieved to finally be able to start a new life in London, Ont., almost five years after fleeing to Lebanon.

Soro said she plans to enroll her children, ages seven and nine, in school next week. “Hopefully the future for them is bright,” she added, speaking through an interpreter.

Aris Babikian, who sponsored a Syrian family, called it a “dream come true” that they had “finally” arrived.

He said all of the refugees have been through difficulty.

“Any moment a bomb can explode,” he said, adding, “they don’t have work; they don’t have a life.”

“If it wasn’t for the generous program that the government brought we would not be able to bring these people,” Babikian said.

READ MORE...

Political promises

Canada agreed last January to take in 10,000 Syrian refugees over three years, but just over 1,000 had arrived by July, according to government figures.

As deaths of refugees crossing the Mediterranean for asylum in Europe grabbed headlines, the government faced increasing criticism that its response to the five-year-old war has been slow.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper recently said that 2,500 Syrians had been resettled and that his Conservative party is committed to admitting 11,300 in total by the end of 2018, if re-elected.

The Conservatives have also said the government has sped up processing of asylum applications in Winnipeg, and deployed more personnel to embassies in Beirut, Amman and Ankara.

READ MORE...

Tom Mulcair has committed his New Democrats to taking 46,000 government-sponsored refugees by 2019, including 10,000 refugees by the end of 2015 alone.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has long said Canada should take in 25,000 Syrian refugees.

More than 12 million people have been displaced and at least 200,000 have been killed since the Syrian civil war began, according to the United Nations.

More than four million of those displaced have registered with the UN as refugees, mostly in Turkey (1.94 million), Lebanon (1.14 million) and Jordan (629,000).

CANADA AM LIVE REPORT VIDEO: Nazar Poladian opens up about his journey to Canada, what his life in Syria was like and how he feels to be in his new home.

VIDEO LINK: http://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=705524

With reports from CTV Toronto and CTV London


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi
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