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As Europe opens its doors, Japan considers clamping down harder on asylum seekers

190 Comments
By Thomas Wilson

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Japan is watching the unfolding mess in Europe and does not want to go there. Who can blame her?

22 ( +50 / -28 )

11 is pretty low. On the other hand Europe is out of control. This is a ticking bomb. This will end badly since it will be impossible to assimilate all of them.

13 ( +30 / -17 )

Abe said that he wants Japan to take a more pro-active role in the world and contribute to world peace; his means, to expand the role of the JSDF. Great way to show you're interested in world peace. Abe will support military operations in the mid-East but not accept the fall out from the resulting actions. So ironic that the former UNHCR high commissioner was a Japanese, Ogata, Sadako. We welcome the world to the Tokyo Olympics...hooyah!

23 ( +32 / -10 )

TumbleDry SEP. 10, 2015 - 06:46AM JST This will end badly since it will be impossible to assimilate all of them.

This is the reason why more countries need to get involved. Maybe Japan, a third-largest GDP in the world could learn from very strong humanitarian response from Australia and most of EU. Problem is that Japan has never been a country that shoulders its responsibilities, that pulls its weight globally. Even Australia with a small GDP wants to increase a number of refugees to provide a second chance in life to those who is going through international humanitarian crisis. There will be a very strong humanitarian response from Australia and EU. But not from Japan.

11 ( +25 / -15 )

"But Japan’s government does not see escaping war as a legitimate reason for claiming asylum,..." Seriously? Can't think of a better reason to move. What are the legitimate reasons, then?

20 ( +29 / -10 )

Japan sees the societal problems caused by loose immigration policies and has learned from the mistakes of European countries. Good on her.

5 ( +34 / -29 )

No surprises here unfortunately

4 ( +16 / -12 )

Even if the Daily Mail readers who comment here are right about the doom laden consequences for Europe Japan could at least take 5000 people a year without noticing. 11 just shows its characteristic avoidance of responsibility and general meanness.

7 ( +20 / -14 )

Japan is a racist country and we should say so. In Europe it's a humanitarian crisis, those people have no place to go. Germany and a few others refuse to watch them die, the UK and Japan on the other side among others, prefer that they stay in Syria and get killed there. To all those who claim that Japan and others can not take them in, just try yourself for one second to imagine to be in that position of those refugees and ask yourself what you would do. They don't want to leave their country, they want to stay but can't. People and governments who are refusing them shelter are the same who would have sent the Jews back to the camps, perod.

10 ( +27 / -18 )

Europe is making a big mistake in the long run. The US is smart. So is Japan. Why in the world should a country in the Far East be "expected" to take refugees from the middle east, at Europe's doorsteps? I'm surprised that Japan takes any in. How many the CHINA THE SECOND BIGGES ECONOMIC POWER IN THE WORLD take in? How about South Korea?

-3 ( +27 / -28 )

While bashing Japan, which already has significant internal economic problems of her own, how many refugees are being admitted to Saudi Arabia, which has a more similar cultural heritage and is rather wealthy?

32 ( +40 / -10 )

Once Abe,s bills go through and JSDF is involved in the next West led military misadventure somewhere probably in the ME again, Japan will come under pressure to shoulder more responsibility to help out with refugees since it will be a participant. Watch it squirm then...bet no one in the govt. wants to talk about that now.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

In the 70's some African countries kicked out Asians from their country despite being born there. By and large they moved to the UK without a hitch. The main problem is that only people born of Japanese blood and live in Japan are considered to be Japanese. Even my ex who is quite liberal couldn't accept the idea of children born in Japan of non Japanese parents being Japanese because of skin colour and blood! Yet adult adoption (changing your name to that of another family) is perfectly fine. You can change from Honda San to Takamoto San, but not Mr Smith to Suzuki San. As the number of mixed race children increases I hope the attutides will change. I was born in the UK to Polish/Bangladeshi parents. I am proud to be British. I am sure many children born to foreign parents in Japan are proud being Japanese too.

23 ( +26 / -3 )

If you are happy for Japan to be included with such humanitarian beacons as China and Saudi Arabia then I guess you can use the "what about" argument. But doesn't Japan believe itself better than that? In reality it probably isn't though. The state has a contemptuous attitude to its own people so we cannot expect any better of it than this for others. Cue special pleading for Japan, as ever.

11 ( +20 / -9 )

It is a humanitarian crisis, and I get that. The images the media chooses to show of these poor families dying to escape and the stories of rape and murder of passengers by other passengers is absolutely heartbreaking.

It's just, to me, what problem does it solve if you just keeping taking in immigrants? A thousand come, you say okay. Five thousand more, okay. One hundred thousand more, sure. A million, two million, and on and on and on. You can't sustain that, no country or continent can just take in an entire region's population while trying to provide for it's own.

But what does taking in everyone who wants out do to solve the problem of why they want out? A damn is leaking. You could get more buckets to save the water escaping or you fix the damn.

Soon, people will just leave because they know they can. Most have no identification, you have no idea if they are ISIS fighters or not, even those poor families could easily be terrorists.

It really ticks me off how much crap people are giving Europe and the US to do more just because they're rich countries and that they have saved tens of millions of illegals already and no one even expects China or Russia to do anything just because well, they're Russia and China. China and Russia love to flaunt their power and wealth but don't even help these people who are escaping from the countries that are business partners of theirs.

11 ( +21 / -10 )

Well done Japan!

-6 ( +17 / -23 )

I can't envisage many Syrians walking to Japan.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Yeah, I agree, Japan is a racist, arrogant, ethnocentric country.

But, they also don't have nearly the societal issues, crime issues, murder rate, drug issues that Europe or anywhere near what America has. Why? Because of this absurd belief that you can take in million after million of immigrants and think everyone is going to get along.

People are thinking way too much with their heart over their head.

Most locals are angry because immigrants won't learn the language or try to assimilate, and the immigrants are angry because they feel they should get everything handed to them as soon as they come over and any attempts of teaching them their new host country's language or culture is seen as attacking them and their heritage.

I can't blame Japan for not wanting the issues all of these once famous peaceful countries are starting to see from accepting this mass exodus.

5 ( +19 / -16 )

Readers, please stop referring to Japan as a racist country. It is both inflammatory and incorrect.

Japan is a racist country and we should say so. In Europe it's a humanitarian crisis, those people have no place to go. Germany and a few others refuse to watch them die, the UK and Japan on the other side among others, prefer that they stay in Syria and get killed there. To all those who claim that Japan and others can not take them in, just try yourself for one second to imagine to be in that position of those refugees and ask yourself what you would do. They don't want to leave their country, they want to stay but can't. People and governments who are refusing them shelter are the same who would have sent the Jews back to the camps, perod.

A very simplistic way of looking at this "humanitarian crisis". I do not blame Japan for not taking in these "refugees". The majority of these "refugees" are economic migrants. Why are they insisting on settling in Austria or Germany and not the first EU country they set foot in? The generous benefits given to them? I also wonder why the majority of these "refugees" are well-fed, well-clothed, smart-phone carrying young males? What about the millions of "refugees" who are in the same boat as the hoards now invading the EU? Letting in these people without proper screening will set a dangerous precedent.

2 ( +18 / -16 )

I have suddenly seen the light. The reason many people claim to love Japan is precisely because it is "a racist, arrogant, ethnocentric country." It represents their vision of the world. The Daily Mail readers of the UK would be happy here, I am pretty sure.

1 ( +16 / -15 )

Nobody is asking Japan to open the floodgates in the way UK and the rest of Europe has done, but to accept a bit more than the measly 10 or so refugees it has accepted. How the hell is 10 extra people going to destroy Japanese society?

People tend to have short memory. It wasn't that long ago that Japan sent its own people, not even as refugees, but as economic migrants, to places such as Brazil, Peru, Hawaii. And let's not forget Manchuria and the rest of East Asia and the Pacific. Or the way Japanese along with other East Asians have anchor babies in countries like USA but would be disgusted at the idea of foreign babies in Japan getting citizenship there. But with the shoe on the other foot? I hope Japan doesn't sink into the ocean because that's when really they'll know how refugees feel.

Yes, this 'how about China or South Korea' argument is really wearing thin. Japan does NOT like being compared to these countries. It's a sure way of getting them defensive when you put them down to that level. Japan likes to be in the league of the western countries (who, incidentally, have been welcoming of refugees and migrants for decades).

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

@harvey pekar "no one even expects China and Russia to do anything"

Right. Japan did not start wars in Iraq, Syria, Libya. China and Russia also did not create a havoc in that region. Westerners did. So it's their responsibility to take refugees. When you start wars, you must realize all possible consequences. That is why I have no sympathy for Europeans.

-17 ( +6 / -23 )

**Since the Bosnian War these refugees or migrant have shown their interest not to move to the Asian countries ... their priority always europe. It does not help if Japan China and South Korea offer to accept them ... and settle them in their country . They stay temporarily in a majority Muslim country Malaysia or Indonesia in a hope to go to Australia. I did not say that I agreed with the Japanese policy on refugees but at least Japan can help and consider refugees with a good education background like technician engineer etc to help overcome Japan's manpower need and reduce the burden of the refugees and other countries as well

2 ( +4 / -2 )

and no one even expects China or Russia to do anything

What Yamashi said. Furthermore, Saudi Arabia and UAE= zero refugees.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

It's easy to argue that nothing can be solved unless the root cause is not addressed. But Japan's lack of action to this matter is totally disgraceful. Tightening the law this timing sends the message that this country is so hard to enter that you shouldn't even think about it. At the same time, Japan that suffers from chronic labor shortage especially of manual labor exploits foreigners under infamous "foreign trainee program." Several tens of thousands are accepted to work in Japan under this program for a few years. Japan likes this system because it can get cheap and disposable labor. Some work for an hourly wage of 300 yen. With Tokyo Olympics related construction ahead, Japan will probably accept even more of them. Immigration and refugee issues really bring out the worst of Japan. Japanese people's general lack of sympathy for people who are not "us" allows this kind of disgrace to continue.

-4 ( +7 / -11 )

11 out of 5,000 is disgraceful. Japan, with a population of 120,000,000 could certainly do better.

-1 ( +13 / -14 )

Good move for Japan. Don't invite in this mess your country has nothing at all to do with. This is a 7th century culture fleeing violent psychos and letting in the refugees will inevitably let in the violent psychos. Keep in mind violent psychos were not born that way, they were raised into animals by their own culture. Let these people in and they will start rioting, form slums where they use sharia law and expect to see japanese women become rape victims.

Dont invite in a problem, keep it out.

11 ( +27 / -16 )

yamashi SEP. 10, 2015 - 09:05AM JST Japan did not start wars in Iraq, Syria, Libya. China and Russia also did not create a havoc in that region. Westerners did. So it's their responsibility to take refugees.

On the contrary, it promotes the feeling in wide parts of the international community that Japan is a nation without principles and lack of responsibility. I do not think that there is a problem with Japan playing a role not small. But if it makes a contribution to the international community through economic means, it becomes an excuse for not making a political contribution, and it tend to be on a level not so big. What is being demanded from Japan now is exactly the opposite, that Japan should start taking part in international politics and pursues economic politics which are beyond mere economic reality.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Wise move.

3 ( +15 / -12 )

Japan has the right to set her own criteria and policies. I hope they continue to not be influenced by other nations moaning. That doesn't make them racist it makes them prudent and smart. Predictable as ever, calling the racist card is a just a way to try and guilt Japan (and any other country) into doing more they wish to do.

7 ( +16 / -9 )

@Guy Fawkes. The reason why soooo many of them are well - clothed and have smart phones, is simple that they are not coming out of the jungle. Syria was one of the most advanced countries in that region, had a very good education system. Many of the refugees are well trained, teachers, doctors and engineers. They had to leave everything behind. The jews arrived well-clothed too at the camps and they even had wrist watches. And you should watch your language. "...hoards invading Europe..." But I assume you must be British.

-1 ( +12 / -13 )

A predictable reaction but entirely understandable. And Todd Topolski is absolutely right, because the first priority of a government is to look after its citizens in both the short and the long term, and you do NOT want to risk letting the wrong people in only to find later on that they are causing social division by introducing alien concepts from the Middle Ages.

9 ( +16 / -7 )

Well for those of you trying to defend Japan by saying "what about China", according to Wikipedia, China has a total refugee population of 301,018 (4564 natives per refugee), while Japan has 2,649 (48165 natives per refugee) and the USA has 264,763 (1215 natives per refugee). So your argument of China needs to do more first before Japan falls flat

3 ( +14 / -11 )

I live in Australia. A country built by refugees and migrants (I myself is one, too) which has become one of the most multicultural countries in the world. My wife and I live in a house (not a huge one in Australian standard) with 4 bedrooms, 2 toilets and 2 showers. If someone asks me if I am willing to house a refugee or asylum seeker in my house (The AIrBNB for refugee will is happening in some countries including Australia). My answer is 'No'. Call me a cold hearted person or anything you want. The thing is I have no obligation to do it. Therefore I can say 'No'. To my knowledge I don't think Japan has any obligation to take in more refugees. So if the Japanese government decides not to do more. I will not criticise it. However if it decides to open its door a little bit more or rise its money donation (I think it does do, right?) I will say 'Good on you, mate.'.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

@Moonraker Your right there! I'm an English daily mail reader and I love Japan! I used to be proud to call myself English but now I only refer to myself as a Mancunian! I'm embarrassed to be English and even more embarrassed to be a "European"! I can honestly say that I now feel more patriotic to Japan than I do to England and Europe. I'm now a white Japanese man! Lol

-8 ( +8 / -16 )

"Russia also did not create a havoc in that region."

Syria has been a close military client of the Russians throughout the postwar period. When the Syrians tried to destroy Israel a couple of times, all its weapons were gifts from the Soviets. The military is also designed around Soviet battlefield doctrine.

And today, Putin is amassing sophisticated weapons like attack aircraft in Syria.

This forum needs a BS detector, with blatantly false info like that quoted above to be automatically deleted.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

To all of those with bleeding hearts: You can't solve the world's problems. By taking in refugees, you're just telling the government of the home countries of these people: "The status quo is OK. Go ahead and continue being corrupt and war torn."

And where's the UN in all of this? Time for the world to step up, topple these regimes, and let the people live in their homeland.

9 ( +13 / -4 )

@JeffLee"Syria has been a close military client of the Russians".

So what? What is your point ? The havoc was created by Americans, not Soviets. With Soviet help Syria was a stable state with well-educated population. The USA began to support anti-Assad rebels. Later those rebels became founders of ISIS. Now ISIS is growing like cancer and people are afraid to be killed. That is why they are moving to Europe.

"The forum needs a BS detector"

Not this forum but your PC and smartphone.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

And where's the UN in all of this? Time for the world to step up, topple these regimes, and let the people live in their homeland.

USA alone can finish the war with its superior military might. However, USA forces and civilian casulities, other factors, especially the Syrian goverment being pro-Russian, have leaded to USA not willing to get involved too much in this conflict. Just imagine if it was Israel or Saudi Arabia suffering I bet the USA will bomb the crap out of those regimes.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Hi, @sue jones,

I'm calling BS on that stat. That refugee Wikipedia stat is a very narrow look at how many actual immigrants, illegal or legal, or foreign born citizens plus refugees a country actually has.

The US lets in the most immigrants in the world. According to OECD data, Japan is number 5 in countries that lets in immigrants, following the US, UK, Spain, and Germany.

China is not even in the top 25 of immigrant population according to the OECD data. So big deal they're a little higher in rankings in refugee population when they're far below actual immigrant/foreign born population.

And China's refugees are from North Korea and Myanmar, etc and believe me, China doesn't want them. They don't have a high rate of refugees out of the goodness of their hearts.

Japan lets in immigrants, usually educated, financially secure, or someone who has a skill to offer. They're uneasy about letting in refugees, the desperate, the destitute, that have no records, no money, and they want to bring in their whole familes.

Can you blame Japan for who they want to let in their country? It's the safest country in the world for a reason.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Well, thanks for confirming my thesis, RickShinjuku. The paradox, of course, is that your idealized society doesn't really have any place for you within it. In fact, it is suspicious of you, just like the potential asylum seekers it turns away. How do you deal with that?

0 ( +6 / -6 )

These migrants don't even qualify as refugee as per definition set by the U.N. Convention. It's not Japan's fault that the rest of the so called Western nations simply chose to implement a lax version of it thereby creating an atmosphere where these people actually believe they have the right to seek a new life to the destination of their own choosing.

3 ( +15 / -12 )

@ Harvey pekar Immigrants and refugees are apples and oranges. We are talking about refugees here

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Harvey, I agree with much of what you said. However, saying "It's the safest country in the world for a reason" implies that with refugees comes a spike in crime. Definitely need some stats to prove that.

I just don't think the Japanese are or ever will be ready to accept a lot of people who are olive skinned and look so different to them, at least not the current or even the next generation. A few, maybe. But a lot? They'll be relegated to their own enclave somewhere on the outskirts of Tokyo or in Gunma.

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Good on ya, Japan! How in the world people get the idea they have the RIGHT to just set up shop anew in another country boggles my mind.

Why don't these people stay home and fight to change their country's horrible conditions. Yeah, many would die, but think about their future generations!

Aaaggghhh! But too much PCBS!

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Japanese guide to international problems:

Remain largely ignorant of the world beyond these shores. Express real surprise when S hits the F. Don't get involved, either strike the "Ostrich Pose" or follow the American master like a dog on a leash. If 1 and 2 don't work. Don't try and understand the issues, just throw money at the problem. There is no 4. Just keep repeating 3 ad nauseum.
3 ( +11 / -8 )

Hi, @sue jones,

Exactly, we're talking about refugees. You made it seem China is more noble because they have more refugees than Japan, but just google China and refugees and read article after article of problems China is having or they don't want the refugees or China says they foresee problems with letting in refugees.

Just because China has more refugees than Japan doesn't mean anything. China is actively trying to send them back from where they came.

Japan is trying to stop refugees from coming in just as most countries do when it comes to illegal immigrants storming your borders.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

While Japan's refugee policies are way to restrictive, I don't see why they should be responsible for refugees from halfway around the world, running from conflicts Japan has no hand in, and coming to a country that is completely unfamiliar culturally to them. Indo-European refugees should be taken in by similar nations.

Considering how poorly many blend in once in Europe, where the cultural differences are not so wide, how would they blend in in Japan?

It is quite likely that Japan may face the question of refugees from other East Asian countries (even China) in the future. Those people should be accommodated first. They have some cultural similarities and don't have a history of demanding their host country changes everything to accommodate them.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@Jeff Lee. "This forum needs a BS detector, with blatantly false info like that quoted above to be automatically deleted." Sentence of the year in my book, friend!

@Yamashi. "So what? What is your point ? The havoc was created by Americans, not Soviets. With Soviet help Syria was a stable state with well-educated population. The USA began to support anti-Assad rebels. Later those rebels became founders of ISIS. Now ISIS is growing like cancer and people are afraid to be killed. That is why they are moving to Europe."

The population of Syria wants Assad out. Without Russian intervention, Assad would have been "voted out" of office or overthrown. Russian military intervention made that impossible and the current civil war is the result. These rebels you speak of did not become ISIS any more than an apple becomes a donkey. ISIS entered the war as a means of spreading its influence. While I support the evacuation of all women, children and elderly, I suggest you take a good look at the videos of "refugees" escaping to Europe; a good portion of them are younger men who should be staying and fighting but, judging from the chanting and preaching going on in buses and trains destined for Hungary and beyond, I would say they are ISIS fighters looking to spread the gospel.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

yeah, honestly I agree on Japan and any other nation's border security policy. Letting that many refugees in at that large amount will only spell disaster for the hosting nation. What kind of jobs can be offered to them? Will most of the majority in Germany and Austria be force to live in lower income neighborhoods or ghettos? Will in three years time, crime rate be soaring due to drug abuse, unemployment, prostitution, rape, and theft?

Letting Syrians into Germany and Austria is obviously a complicated issue for them; Germans and Austrians will always be put in the spot light due to their past crimes against humanity during World War 2, therefore many politicians and foreign policy advisers agree to allow them in. But doing so, how many other migrants from escaping warzones and poverty be trying to enter Germany and Austria? Afghanis and Iraqis are surely already making their way to Germany as well as Africans escaping poverty and war.

It is nice to show the world that Germany and Austria is taking action to mend its past, but I'm sure this will become a very very big issue in the future if there is no proper compensation or care provided by the state to these people. It's therefore much cheaper to tighten border security than providing housing, medical care, food, clothing, and employment to these migrants who have nothing to do with them. If anything, America should take better steps in allowing them into our country. ISIS is the main cause for the influx, and our wartime adventures into Iraq has led to former Iraqi military officers taking charge over ISIL. We shouldve sent boots into Syria like what russia is doing now, but since our administration cares too much for American lives, they are making other allied countries pay the price for our past mistakes.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

It seems that Japan would never accept thousands of refugees, as it is still very very hard for a few refugees today. If it accepted thousands of islamic refugees then they would build up mosques all over Japan. Most Japanese don't want so many such different religious buildings across Japan. Mixture of cultural temples, shrines and adding new mosques will disfigure the beautiful view of Japan. In the future Japan would face the completely same immigration troubles jut like Germany, France today. That is Japan dislikes.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

But Japan’s government does not see escaping war as a legitimate reason for claiming asylum, and has no plans to widen its criteria to include flight from conflict, said Sato.

The strict interpretation of refugee law...

My dear Mr. Sato, as a signatory, the criteria is set for you. Not the other way around. The system here is like a pit with a door at the bottom ... with any weeds for help to climb out being wet and pointing systematically downward along the sides into the pit and toward the door (out of the country -- in my case Guam).

Been there, challenged each refused application ... all the way down. Interesting education, if you have not experienced.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Tokyo gave $167 million to the UNHCR in the first half of this year

Yes, a very generous donation, to be used to keep refugees away.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

For every 1000 Saudi Arabia takes, Japan should take one.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

I'm saddened by the general tone here that Japan is doing a "clever and right thing" by staying distant about this issue. Correct me if I'm wrong but aren't many of these asylum seekers genuinely seeking safety from their terror stricken countries? If not why do they risk treacherous inflatable dinghy trip to escape with their small children even after the news of a dead boy washed up to ashore was all over the media? Isn't this a bigger criss in the human history that requires more than being "cleaver"? Or am I brainwashed by the media?

2 ( +8 / -6 )

As for me, I see Islam as being a very intolerant religion that is basically incompatible with western values and norms.

I observe that muslim people generally do not integrate well into Western societies.

There are also problems with muslim extremism.

For these reasons, I do not want 1000s of muslim people suddenly moving into my locality.

If they want to relocate, muslim people should seek out muslim countries to live in.

6 ( +14 / -8 )

Japanese guide to international problems: Remain largely ignorant of the world beyond these shores. Express real surprise when S hits the F. Don't get involved, either strike the "Ostrich Pose" or follow the American master like a dog on a leash. If 1 and 2 don't work. Don't try and understand the issues, just throw money at the problem. There is no 4. Just keep repeating 3 ad nauseum.

I think you got the wrong post! This here is about Japan trying to maintain its borders. I think you want the earlier post about Hateius Japanicus!

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I observe that muslim people generally do not integrate well into Western societies.

There are millions and millions of Muslims living in Western societies who fit in just fine, and have/cause no problems whatsoever. This comment is ridiculous.

0 ( +11 / -11 )

Yes, this 'how about China or South Korea' argument is really wearing thin. Japan does NOT like being compared to these countries. It's a sure way of getting them defensive when you put them down to that level

Hold on a second there buddy. South Korea has accepted over 450 refugees last year, over 75 of them were Syrian refugees which is far more than what Japan has ever done which is zero Syrian refugees. And you talk of Japan "getting down to their level"??? Hey.. how about Japan coming up to South Korea's level first, before spouting such nonsense?

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Please do clamp down Japan. I don't want to the problems in Japan that the other countries have.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

11 ? Raise higher and stronger walls and ultimately the target goal will be 0 ...and in both direction.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

As for me, I see Islam as being a very intolerant religion that is basically incompatible with western values and norms.

Spot on.

With an election in my home country of Canada next month, this issue has become a political football. While I will admit that some, not the majority, of these migrants are real refugees, I believe that there are quite a few who are taking advantage of this situation in order to circumvent immigration laws.

I observe that muslim people generally do not integrate well into Western societies.

Here is an article that backs up this statement.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/sex-education-ontario-curriculum-1.3220454

The onus is on ALL immigrants to integrate into the country they emigrated to.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Japan saw on TV recently a muslim man demanding Japan respect their religion over freedom of speech, which made the Japanese very scared. Japan should never accept anybody who would challenge Japan's constitution.

6 ( +16 / -10 )

"There are millions and millions of Muslims living in Western societies who fit in just fine, and have/cause no problems whatsoever. This comment is ridiculous."

This comment by Strangerland could be called the Smoke Screen of the Majority. Most people use this type of comment or argument when trying to apologize for the acts of a certain group. This argument ignores the following points:

1.) Integrating or assimilating to countries other than your own is expected. It is the rule, not the exception. You will not be applauded or saluted for doing it but rather criticized when you don't.

2.) It is always the minority that reflects a country. Cases-in-point: the majority or Germans were not Nazi's but Germany was/is saddled with the guilt of the Holocaust. Ditto for the Japanese and Nankin, etc. In these cases and others, the majority was moved by the minority. It always has been and probably always will be.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

This comment by Strangerland could be called the Smoke Screen of the Majority. Most people use this type of comment or argument when trying to apologize for the acts of a certain group. This argument ignores the following points:

Who's apologizing for anything? The overwhelming majority of Muslims in western nations haven't done anything for which they need to apologize.

-5 ( +7 / -12 )

Many of the comments support taking in these refuges. ISIS has already boasted about having over 4000 of it's radicals infiltrate with these people. Japan has given the second largest amount to help with the relocations. I see no reason for Japan to bring in people who want to impose their lifestyles on our country rather than assimilate into the society. It hasn't worked anywhere in the world, so why do the same here. There are still many places in the middle east they could go without fear of hostilities. I feel for the families that want to get out but, I am happy the way Japan is today and do not want to see what I experienced in the States come here.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@moonraker: 11 just shows its characteristic avoidance of responsibility and general meanness.

It depends on the point of view doesn’t it? Not accepting refugees into a society which is not generally prepared to readily and open-mindedly accept other cultures sounds (to me personally) more like preventing possible problems before they even become possible. As for the general meanness, would you please enlighten us what that means?

But doesn't Japan believe itself better than that?

Is it really a matter of what Japan thinks of itself in this case? I personally appreciate the low crime rate in this country and the fact that I do not have to worry about personal safety when I walk in the street of one of the most densely populated metropolises be it in day time or at night.

@sfjp330: On the contrary, it promotes the feeling in wide parts of the international community that Japan is a nation without principles and lack of responsibility.

Yeah. You see what you want to see. But I would take “this” Japan rather than Australia whose PM said that the country would take 13,000 more Syrian refugees and will strengthen its participation in the bombings of Syrian towns.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Maybe Japan, a third-largest GDP in the world could learn from very strong humanitarian response from Australia and most of EU. Problem is that Japan has never been a country that shoulders its responsibilities, that pulls its weight globally. Even Australia with a small GDP wants to increase a number of refugees to provide a second chance in life to those who is going through international humanitarian crisis. There will be a very strong humanitarian response from Australia and EU. But not from Japan.

sfjp330 -- I believe you meant Austria, and not Australia, but your sentiment is spot on. Japan rose to economic power due to international trade, and still owes much of its prosperity due to exports to foreign countries. (I see a lot of Nissan and Toyota trucks in the news clips from the Middle East.) But, as you say, when it comes to actually showing a caring/human heart to those less privledged, Japan turns its back -- as always. Eleven lousy refugees. About .00000086% of the population. My god, I can understand why folks like WilliB would be so scared about the consequences of say going completely crazy and upping that number to even 1,000. This kind of blatant, government supported xenophobia, was one of the reasons I chose to leave Japan and stop supporting such "thinking" with my hard-earned taxes. Hang your head in shame Japan.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

@samwatters "The population of Syria wants Assad out". Not the population of Syria but dirty US politicians who always like to push mugs into domestic affairs of various countries. Under Assad Syria was and still is a stable state just like Iraq was under rule of Saddam Hussain. Americans want to turn Syria into another ME hellhole with endless nightmare of armed clashes and terrorist camps. Now Americans urge their European satellites to get waves of refugees.Anyway, Japan should stay aside of that mess.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Here's a link to a documentary by the BBC's respected Panorama team.

It highlights the problem of segregation of muslims in Western societies.

IMHO muslims generally do not integrate well in Western societies. In many cases they carve out a separate enclave for themselves... almost a parallel universe... where they prefer to live with other muslims and have as little as possible to do with Western people and culture.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/panorama/6631541.stm

Of course it's hard to talk about such problems because some people are very blinkered and, for them, everything is fine and dandy and muslims are fitting in wonderfully.

So kudos to the Panorama team.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Japan did not remove Saddam Hussein in the name of non existent WMD. Japan did not start the Arab Spring which has become never ending Arab nightmare. Therefore coalition of willing who ruined the stability and order of middle east have to take responsibilities for that out of control human wave crisis.

Well so then Japan has to take its part since it has supported and even sent assistance to US when they went to Iraq. They had what they called a Japan Self-Defense Forces Iraq Reconstruction and Support Group in Iraq. You seem to have some short memory here.

We all know that US (I should say the Bush government) lied about the motivations for attacking Iraq and Japan fully, blindly and stupidly supported them in what would become the biggest strategic mistake ever in our century. Having attacked Iraq is known to have been the key in destabilizing all Middle East and have opened the door for uncontrolled savages to take over Iraq and its neighbors. France previous president Sarkosy (with England) even made it worse by going after Kadhafi in Lebanon, crazy politicians really.

So here you go, Japan has to take his part in this mess. This is amazing that Europe has to deal alone with all of this crap when the original responsibility (from where it all began) relies on US, England AND Japan.

But Japan’s government does not see escaping war as a legitimate reason for claiming asylum

So what is it then? An asylum is usually defined as "the protection granted by a nation to someone who has left their native country as a political refugee". How Japan defines these people then? How does Japan defines people escaping from IS? I would like to know.

Or maybe it's something else than this ridiculous reason. In fact why don't they have some real honesty and just say instead that Japan is a unwelcoming, displeasing country populated with intolerant racists? Then it would be clear to everyone out there and they won't have to even deal with refugees anymore. Ever, so problem solved right?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

Not the population of Syria but dirty US politicians who always like to push mugs into domestic affairs of various countries.

Yup, always easiest to blame your intolerance on a "problem" supposely created by others. That keeps you from having to actually look yourself in the mirror and face the truth...

In fact why don't they have some real honesty and just say instead that Japan is a unwelcoming, displeasing country populated with intolerant racists? Then it would be clear to everyone out there and they won't have to even deal with refugees anymore. Ever, so problem solved right?

which daito-hak stated so perfectly.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

This rally was not all about muslims seeking refuge in Japan. Half of these people are living here in Japan for almost 20 yrs. and have families who also living here..mosts are married to japanese citizens, still, the japanese immigration don't want to give them special permit to stay. Making it so hard for them, and their own citizens to live a normal lives..does anyone wants to live their lives separated from their children and families?..the japanese immigration have no consideration regarding these cases.. The truth behind this newsfeed is not about muslims and refugees, literary!

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Here's a link to a documentary by the BBC's respected Panorama team.

It highlights the problem of segregation of muslims in Western societies.

Again, confirmation bias.

Those that try to guilt others here with the tired argument "what if you were the one seeking asylum?" just don't get it. Number one, I am NOT seeking asylum therefore I do not have to imagine myself in that situation

I'm assuming you must not be Christian, because that's most definitely not a 'do unto others' attitude as preached by the bible.

What a lot of Westerners seem to be ignoring is that this issue was created by the west, when the US removed Saddam. Any country that had anything to do with that should be taking in refugees.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

…what about human rights!?..japanese immigration in almost some cases, violating it..

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Don't do the mistakes that Germany does.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

sfjp330 -- I believe you meant Austria, and not Australia

He meant Australia all right. The PM of Australia, Tony Abbott, announced yesterday a one off intake of 12,000 more Syrian refugees. However, this is mainly due to mounting pressure within his own political party. The current Australian government is no angel in dealing with asylum seekers.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why not send them to North America or South America where there is more SPACE !!! Its not about Yes or No or Want to Accept or Not, or integration...its about SPACE...for those who never been to Europe. WE DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH SPACE let alone for current residents. I live in Japan now and don't want to return to Europe.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Seems we've been here before. When Jews fleeing the Nazi regime sought refuge in other countries, governments around the world shut the door on them. The argument being that the Jews couldn't be trusted, they had a hidden agenda, they wouldn't assimilate, they would undermine the society, culture and economy of any country they settled in. They were too alien, their values weren't like ours, they were swarthy, dirty and depraved, their religion was strange and threatening, blah blah blah. We just never learn.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Japan. Please enjoy the benefits of being a first world member of the international community and completely ignore the responsibilities.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

People…? These arguments were far beyond the news topics..this rally was not about muslims and refugees.!...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Don't do the mistakes that Germany does.

Yeah yeah the mistakes of Germany. Go to ask companies in Germany if they are not happy to have a new labor force in a country which has seen a rapid increase of labor shortage. I can tell you they don't seem to be scared at all of all those muslims invading them. Instead companies in Germany are asking for more people. That's a fact, the reality of things outside of the reactionist speech we hear here.

AND all the debate is just mostly crap because A LOT OF people coming from Syria to Europe are not muslims but christians escaping from IS. So all the debate being focused on the integration of muslims in Western "cultures" is basically just wrong although yes the integration of muslims have had and has its difficulties, nobody can deny the reality. But the debate is totally biased here...

Even if Japan would accept the 5,000 asylum seekers from last year, that would be a drop into the ocean in comparison the the Japanese population. This is nothing, nobody in Japan would notice them. Come on...

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Where is the "Omotenashi"? Where is the "Japanese people are very kind"?

Of course, when it comes to stepping up to the plate and actually doing something, Japan suddenly rushes behind the castle walls.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

all refugees should come to australia. we are also multicultural. lots of room here and opportunity.despite some of the negative people here most migrants are very helpful to this country. and we are all migrants here from 200 years ago till now. too many people in japan now. not a good place to raise a family unless you are rich. even then it is most helpful if you are japanese. that is their right.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Japan should never accept anybody who would challenge Japan's constitution.

@Tina ... In that case, why do they tolerate that Muppet of a prime minister then?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

http://www.news.com.au/world/middle-east/spot-the-difference-good-vs-bad-refugees/story-fnh81ifq-1227521130295

Read this and you will know sometimes things are not what they look like.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

much of the "tightening" being done in the article is to prevent people from abusing the system. once an applicant is rejected, he or she can stay in the country a further six months and then re-apply. this can go one forever, so this is essentially is a backdoor into japan. hence the immediate deportation of rejected applicants and the limit for reapplication.

and i think if japan was such a racist country as many of you say, then why the heck are you still here? surely you would be better off in your idyllic home country. am i right?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The US is smart. So is Japan.

Actually U.S. just said they will increase the number of refugees. Could be BS though.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Well said, daito_hak!...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Far queue gee + me dear wankers !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why accept a few and not every person in dire need of assistance ? We cannot accept everyone so accept no one. It's the only fair solution. The rest is BS so some can sleep at night with a better conscience...

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

'What a lot of Westerners seem to be ignoring is that this issue was created by the west, when the US removed Saddam. Any country that had anything to do with that should be taking in refugees.'

Agreed. The next step should be to get out and stay out of the Middle East.

@Blackbird439 I'm not sure the comparison with anti-semitism is a good one. Hatred of Jews in Europe was based historically on racism and centuries of being blamed as Christ-killers ( Hitler used this image ). The Jews were feared and disliked for no tangible reason. I don't doubt there are racist and religious motives from many for disliking Muslim immigrants today, but unfortunately terrorist attacks and attempts to threaten the free press by murdering film-makers and satirists has given reason to be apprehensive of large numbers of Muslims entering their countries. The vast majority of Muslims are decent people but this religion more than any other does seem to be producing extremists at the moment. This hasn't escaped the notice of the Japanese media who are never slow to point out the dangers of immigration.

Just on the anti-semitism point, I'd recommend reading some of the work of Mehdi Hasan, a Britsh-born Muslim and highly respected journalist who wrote about rampant anti-semitism in the British Muslim community including holocaust denial. He called this our 'dirty secret'. Muslims in the UK and other European countries to a large degree do need to get their own house in order before talking about Islamophobia. To be brutally honest, there are people Japan could accept who on the whole tend to be less problematic than refugees from Muslim majority countries.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

@Pukey2

Nobody is asking Japan to open the floodgates in the way UK and the rest of Europe has done

The UK does have flood gates - it is called the English Channel. It keeps most illegals out. What gets me about the people living in "the Jungle" in Calais for months on end, desperately trying to sneak into the UK in the backs of lorries, is that they are already in the EU, in a welcoming (at the moment) country; France; and if they don't like France, Germany and Sweden are just up the road , and they are bending over backwards to welcome all these migrants.

One more thing: most of these migrants are milItary-aged young men, without accompanying families. Islamic State must be rubbing their hands with glee at all the sleeper suicide bombers they are managing to infiltrate so easily into Europe. They will just lay low and establish themselves for a few months, and then the floodgates really will open, explosively. Has this not occurred to Merkel, Hollande, Juncker and their cronies?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Samurai84: Why not send them to North America or South America where there is more SPACE !!! Its not about Yes or No or Want to Accept or Not, or integration...its about SPACE...for those who never been to Europe. WE DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH SPACE let alone for current residents. I live in Japan now and don't want to return to Europe.

There's lots of space in Japan. Just look at population density maps. You don't even need to consider Fukushima.

How about that island with all the scarecrows? Didn't the old lady put those up because the young village folk all moved away?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@StrangerlandSEP. 10, 2015 - 12:17PM JST

Who's apologizing for anything? The overwhelming majority of Muslims in western nations haven't done anything for which they need to apologize.

I see you are not trying to fight the argument that Muslims cause trouble disproportionate to their size. While there are still many Muslims that buckle down, that does not mean their views are compatible. For example, there would be few of them that would actively kill someone "disrespectful" to Islam, but if one of their brethren do so and they are polled, way too many of them will display an unhealthy level of sympathy.

Should we really be volunteering to let these people in?

5 ( +8 / -3 )

For example, there would be few of them that would actively kill someone "disrespectful" to Japan, but if one of their brethren do so and they are polled, way too many of them will display an unhealthy level of sympathy.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Only in Japan. The world needs the doors open, ad Japan get paranoid and locks them further (while looking for praise as a paradise... so long as you're only visiting). Shame on Japan! Hope they don't expect help when th next big one hits.

-1 ( +12 / -13 )

Again, confirmation bias.

I'll take the BBC's well-researched and factual documentary over what amounts to nothing more than an unsupported opinion.

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Interesting consensus from a group who are themselves essentially economic migrants and who seem to feel they deserve a place here because their skill set includes speaking their mother tongue, something they wouldn`t be paid for back home. Puts me in mind of the Republican presidential candidate Bobby Jindal, an immigrant himself who wants to pull up the ladder behind him now that he's in the US. "Hypocites" may not be the right word, but it's the first word that comes to mind...

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Strangerland:

" There are millions and millions of Muslims living in Western societies who fit in just fine, and have/cause no problems whatsoever. This comment is ridiculous. "

That is a familiar talking point, but it is besides the point. Can you name one single Westernn society with "millions of muslims" that does NOT have a problem with a islamic radicalism? I can help you out: there is none. Whereever you have islam, you have the fundamentalists. And if you look at opinion polls like the Pew report, you find majority opinions across the muslim communities, are at odds with Western society; a majority wants Sharia, wants blasphemy laws, wants apostates and homosexuals jailéd or killed, and denies Israels right to exist. Don´t confuse "not looking like Bin Ladin" with "fitting in just fine".

And by the way, I am sure you realize that no single islamic country has signed the UN declaration of human rights? They signed the Cairo declaration instead, with gives priority to Shariah. Does that also fit your definition of "fitting in" with Western values?

4 ( +8 / -4 )

@ anotherexpat,

Spot on.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Islam is going to need to clean it's house.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

As a German, I have to say that this whole refugee thing and migration crisis is NOT about being safe. It's about benefits.

If it was about being safe, they would be happy the moment they set foot in Turkey or any other European country. But no, they especially set their eyes on Germany. They are coming to Europe making demands, throwing away supplies that are prepared for them and given to them while demanding "We don't want your water or food, we want Germany."

In other countries, some of them are throwing defecated matter around in buses and jacking cars to travel to Germany.

And in Germany, if you're caught speaking up against any of this, you're immediately branded a racist and might even be jailed for hate speech when you're just citing what happened. The media downplaying a lot of what's actually going down in Europe doesn't help, either.

So, Japan... do NOT make the same mistake as Germany and keep your doors shut.

8 ( +13 / -5 )

Most Japanese I meet are well disposed towards foreigners, actually it wouldn't be a problem to accept refugees in that regard However, Japan as a state,offers little help to assimilate as the US does nor are there any laws protecting minorities. Without these safeguards better not to come here.....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The old adage that travel broadens the mind is clearly refuted by too many of the comments here. And it is depressing. In fact, the mean-spirited travel to find a country as mean-spirited as they are so they can feel "at home." The paradox is in the fact that their chosen utopia is exclusionary, and incurious and ungenerous in supporting the dreaded outside, and clearly becoming more so before our very eyes as nationalism becomes entrenched and Abe takes the country further to the right. Soon this idyll is surely going to turn its xenophobic eye on them. Then they will be out quicker than they can shout, "I love Japan".

4 ( +7 / -3 )

I'm with moonraker on this.... nothing more to add.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The real "refugees" we should help are the Yazidis and Christians in Syria and Western Iraq, who are genocided by ISIS.

But they are not coming to Germany, and the media are blatantly non-interested in them.

Who is coming are Sunni muslims -- who could go to dozens of Sunni muslim Arab countries in the neighbourhood if all they wanted is to escape war. But no, they want to go to Germany, and Merkel is inviting them.

Meanwhile, the last remaining Yazidis and Christians in the area being mass-murdered, and the media show blatant non-interest.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

@Furan

As a German, do you think the German nation is throwing the doors open to all these migrants to assuage deep-seated, historic feelings of guilt from their actions in the second World War? (I saw one elderly German woman on TV saying this kind of thing).

In this context, interesting that the Japanese nation only allowed in 11 asylum seekers....

1 ( +2 / -1 )

and i think if japan was such a racist country as many of you say, then why the heck are you still here? surely you would be better off in your idyllic home country. am i right?

Here we go again with the argument, if you live in Japan don't say anything wrong about it. Look, I have been living here for almost 20 years, I pay my bloody tax here (a lot in fact) so I do have the right to raise my voice when something goes wrong even when it happens to be in Japan. Nobody is asking Japan to be an "idyllic" country, we are asking it to show a little sense of humanity here and we are asking Japanese to stop their usual we live in an island and we are a unique "race" BS.

Only accepting 11 out of 5,000 asylum seekers last year is what then? This number is ridiculous and shameful, considering we are talking here about a country where 120 million natives are living. We are not talking about Monaco or something for world sake.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

@Furan

Germany and France have already overwhelmed by economic migrants. For example Turkish immigrants are vey high in Germany. Turkey government is intolerant about Syrian asylum seekers. However many Turkish went o live and work in Germany. Anglela Merkel feels guilty about German dark history in WWII. She is rewriting history with new version.. However it is unfair for new generation have to bear the large burden of human wave. Germany has been sandwiched between Greece bailout and Syrian asylum seekers. Germany has become Santa clause of Greece and Syria.

@Ronal Hassem

During Lebanon civil war in 1970s, Australia accepted ten of thousands of Refugee from that war torn nation. Some were illiterate both Arabic and English. Many enjoyed Aussie welfare, subsidized housing and universal health care. Not many are well integrated into Aussie main stream society. There was a Cronulla racial riot back in many years ago. Crime rates and violence among refugees are very high. Aussie tolerated immigrants culture and sensitivity. However it is not the other way around.

As the nation, government has to show compassion for taking more refugees according the Geneva convention. For decent and hard working Australians, they will be burden and potential terrorists for their peaceful nation. Sydney Lindnt cafe Gunman was granted as Iranian refugee. He repaid his gratitude with killing two Aussies. In USA, Boston bombing brothers were refugees before. They bombed and murdered Americans.

If Australia has to accept Asylum seekers from Europe as you posted, there will be more tragedies like Lindt cafe. Australia foreign debt will be sky rocketed due to feeding and housing those people. Australia is not the richest nations like Qartar, UAE and Saudi Arabia. They should take more rather than other nations.

Japan should take less! Not more.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I do get a bit annoyed when people blame the west for not taking more refugees (though they're taking in enormous amounts right now, and rightly so), because apparently western countries 'started it', but then say nothing of Russia's inaction... to think Russia's not a got a hand in what's happening in Syria is delusional.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@No Ginger

Your claim is accurate. But one has to draw a line after almost 100 years and say enough is enough. We already have more than atoned for the atrocities of WW2, but that's just my opinion.

Guilt is also an understatement since Germans express a form of self-hatred. There's movements that say the Dresden bombings should happen again, for foreign men to rape as many German women as possible because "German genes are evil" and other nonsense like that. Extremists like these are even protected by authorities and not mentioned by media because the German guilt is too strong.

Japan and Germany both have a problem with the amount of their remorse. While too little remorse and nationalism in Japan causes outrage, too much remorse in Germany causes chaos and outrage all over Europe.

Too little remorse is bad, too much remorse is bad. Take it from someone who has to live through all of this.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

No Ginger:

" As a German, do you think the German nation is throwing the doors open to all these migrants to assuage deep-seated, historic feelings of guilt from their actions in the second World War? (I saw one elderly German woman on TV saying this kind of thing). "

That is very likely one factor. An interesting aspect of this is that this massive islamic immigration into Germany also means that the German Jews are now increasingly under attack again. Already Jews are fleeing muslim violence from French and Swedish cities, now Germany will be on that list too. I just read that muslim school children in Bavaria are excempt from the trips to concentration camps (to load up on guilt) that are mandatory for Bavarian children.

Nobody in Germany considers that?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

@Furan

I think Germany is so tolerant about Immigrants ungrateful behaviors. When I watched World Cup, immigrant players from German national soccer team did not bother to open the lips for singing German national Anthem. They are highly paid and trained by Germany. However they did not show any respect to Germany while the world is watching.

If I am the German tax payer, I will be highly offended. In the future, Germany will gradually lose the national identity if human wave is keep coming.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

Europe opens its doors? It's a joke, right? Those "refugees" broke into the EU territories and stomped on all legal regulations there are on immigrants. EU has no means to see which people are refugees and which are economic migrants who just want to get a free pass to the "Promised Land" of Germany and other wealthy countries. That's it - they don't want just peace, they want wealth. And the majority of those people are men - why so? Wouldn't they be coming with their entire families? Or maybe men migrate because they want to earn cash to send it home? That would mean they have no reason to be called "refugees" in the first place.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

as most of the references here are from Wikipedia and everyone is blaming Saudi Arabia and Muslim countries for not taking any refugees.

According to the link SaudiArabia has 500,000 registered refugees of Syrian war by Sep 2005.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Refugees_of_the_Syrian_Civil_War

4 ( +4 / -0 )

@goldeneagle

Petty correction, sorry, but the date above should be 2015. Thanks for the link

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@PTownsend

Thanks for the correction

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm currently in Oxford St.; all around me there are burqas, veils and long robes.

All of this right in the middle of London.

Nothing wrong with burqas, but they do not allow micro-minis in Riyadh.

I sincerely hope Japan does not allow it to become like us!

6 ( +10 / -4 )

There is more and more refugees simply because there is less and less places to live comfortably and in peace in this world where the money dictate your life, and we should rather help them and do a 90 turn degrees in our priorities because tomorrow we could really be one of them. The model society offered by our govt will never make us go to a type 2 civilization.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

To those saying things along the lines of 'they can't be real refugees because they have smartphones', that's just ridiculous. Most people in middle-income countries like Syria is (was) have smartphones... if North Korea were to attack South Korea, would Japan be right to turn away the South Korean civilians trying to escape the violence on the basis that they all have iPhones or Samsungs?!

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Although I disagree, I can understand if Japanese people feel hesitant about allowing refugees into the country, however I'm assuming most of the commenters here are foreigners living in Japan. How on earth can you justify being in Japan and yet being against these refugees being allowed in? I don't think any of us can hold a candle to the horrors that these people have experienced. So you got your space in cozy little Japan now let's shut the door

3 ( +6 / -3 )

@JapanToday

I agree with your proclamation that Japan isn't a racist country. Japanese people are some of the most accomodating people on the planet. Aside from the daily glares of catatonic businessmen, most people don't mistreat you at all. However your proclamation is a partial rendering of a larger more complex truth. Japan is an island country and was very closed off for centuries, a status-quo-lapping media and the remnant language of that bygone era persist in maintaining a xenophobic outlook that is by and large not representative of most Japanese people.

You also fail to mention that Japan's treatment of refugees has been officially denounced by the UN human rights watchdog as utterly inhumane and treating them as sub-human. No one challenges it because non-Japanese have zero representation in politics. The result is a dehumanising, systematically racist politique.

So yes, Japan isn't a racist country, but the politics of Japan is systemically discriminatory and racist.

On a separate note, as part of the UN, Japan simply doesn't pull it's weight regarding refugees and immigration. I absolutely acknowledge amazing aid work Japan has done in other countries and the fact that its one if the few countries that hasn't been reaping blood money in the middle east via the arms trade for the last century (Russia, US, Uk, Canada)... but If it wishes to be considered an ethical pillar of the world, it needs to start respecting the human rights of detainees and immigrants and it needs to breach this wall of disregard for human life when it threatens to affect the number of 'outsiders currently residing in Japan. Ironically such an influx of young blood would likely be beneficial for a country with an aging population and entropically spiralling economy.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

As Europe opens its doors, Japan considers clamping down harder on asylum seekers

Good on Japan for clamping down harder. Those poor Syrian refugees shoulda stayed in turker / lebanon & not head to Germany.

Japan has no business nor any obligation to take in- not even one refugee! If those Syrians come anywhere near this region, they ought just force their way into Indonesia. Muslim take care of muslim first.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

As Apolitical alluded to, the "refugees" should be put in parenthesis for just because you are from a state where armed conflict exist does not equate to the status of refugees defined under 1951 Convention.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

'As Apolitical alluded to, the "refugees" should be put in parenthesis for just because you are from a state where armed conflict exist does not equate to the status of refugees defined under 1951 Convention.'

A sustainable position. By the way, do you think Japan should accept more people whose refugee status is unequivocal under the 1951 Convention?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

A sustainable position. By the way, do you think Japan should accept more people whose refugee status is unequivocal under the 1951 Convention?

Sure. And they have. And in past cases, Japan allowed thousands of "boat people" during the Indochina (Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia) during the aftermath of Vietnam War.

As to why there are few who are granted refugee status, I pasted this on a related article.

http://www.bengo4.com/other/1146/1307/n_2924/

It states that most all came to Japan on a perfectly legal visa (tourist, education, trainee) but as soon as their respective visa is about to expire, they applied for refugee status.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

I read articles and readers' comments about this topic in newspapers from several countries.

This forum with people not exposed to asylum seekers (!) is by far the most ugly one.

Probably talking about something they do not know and does not understand.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Escaping war is not a good enough reason for assylum? Are you kidding me, than what is? We all know about the grisly condition in Syria... and we're turning our backs on these people especially children? Mighty Japan always positioning to be the World leader cant't even help a handful of these reugees... accepting only 7 out of 5000 is a JOKE! We should all be so proud.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

While much can be said of many religions, there is just one that is the cause of these refugees and their suffering in the first place.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Japan needs immigrants. It's economy has been flat for two and a half decades.

Whereas countries that take in large numbers of immigrants, like the US and Canada, are doing very well.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Japan needs immigrants. It's economy has been flat for two and a half decades.

While Japan might need a couple immigrants, what it really needs is a baby boom. More Japanese, not islamic outsiders.

The US is a nation of immigrants in which we pride ourselves in our diversity. Japan is completely opposite Black Sabbath.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

" Whereas countries that take in large numbers of immigrants, like the US and Canada, are doing very well. "

But "immigrants" do not equal "immigrants". Nobody doubts that e.g. Chinese, Japanese, Jewish, or German immigrants are doing very well indeed, especially if the country screens them.

If you look at large, uncontrolled groups from areas that reject Western civilization, you get a completely different picture.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

When the Syrians tried to destroy Israel a couple of times

FOX NEWS would be proud of you

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I think it would be great if each dwindling, struggling rural community could find one akiya in good enough shape to house one family. Help them plant a garden and help the adults find work as adult caregivers or farmhands. Get the kids safe and in school and give them the skills they need to rebuild their homeland when they grow up.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

What is up with this knee-jerk reflex by some commentators here to shout "fox news" every time they want to critize some poster? Is that supposed to be some kind of insider slang? Deeper meaning? Should I start shouting "CNN"??

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

I agree with Japan's policy to limit the number of refugees coming into their country. I am a US Citizen married to a Japanese Citizen. To accept refuges from countries with a vastly different culture will only serve to dilute the Japanese Culture which I respect and revere. Let the gulf countries, who have vast resources due to their oil wealth, take in the refugees. Europe will regret what they are doing, and Chancellor Merkel will be on her way out if she persists on her present course.

We visit Japan annually and do not want to see that unique culture diluted. The Japanese culture should be adopted by more countries and we would have a better world.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Asylum seeker who was accepted as refugee should be given temporary protection visa instead of permanent protection visa. Asylum seekers should go back to their own country when the situation was improved.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Europe will regret what they are doing,

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2015/09/10/president-obama-directs-administration-to-accept-at-least-10000-syrian-refugees-in-the-next-fiscal-year/

So will the US. What nerve. Obama knows bringing in 10,000 "Allahu Akbar" shouting muslims into the US is just gona stir the s**tstorm among ordinary americans. But with a daddy from kenya, he wouldn't know.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

I'm gonna be the evil guy here, but the entire world is watching, and NO COUNTRY would seriously want to have the problems Europe is now facing. Since so far, Japan has no responsibility in the Mideast (although this might change if Abe wants to help his papa bear America granted by these security bills), and therefore they shouldn't be burdened with this refugee crisis. I know, it's a "human responsibility" but governments need to look out for their own people and taxpayers first. It's just how it is, and it's fair. Another thing is, refugees aren't suppose to choose their destination. What we're now seeing in Europe is resembling illegal economic migrants, more than anything. Countries have the right to secure their borders. It's impossible to assimilate this much people coming in, and resources will be quickly exhausted. Ghettos will be formed, then poverty, crime, disease, the full package. It will be an endless cycle of degeneration. Lastly, we have to mention the elephant in the room. Muslims. Yes, I know I'm a jerk for even mentioning this. But we have to admit it. Especially these ones coming directly from war-torn Syria. You think there aren't any of them that are radicalized? Even when some aren't initially, but when they grow up in a ghetto feeling all left out of society, then some of them will eventually be radicalized. We've seen that already, having people going to Syria to join ISIS. We're talking about Europe here still, a generally very open region. Not so much when it comes to Asia. So when an Asian country like Japan knows the facts mentioned above, it's just even more less likely they'd be open about this, and frankly, rightfully so. Why can't the US and Gulf States do their part here? They created this mess.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

This week, I asked a group of middle aged adults to talk about the more major issues, news stories of the week. First topic was.......... The Olympic EMBLEM scandal. They went on and on about this! So, I brought up the refugee situation in Europe. One did not want to talk about it, "Oh, that." and another had no idea, "What's that?" and others knew and wanted to discuss it. It was not a very accurate discussion, and when I asked whether Japan should take in more refugees to help Europe out, they adamantly said, "NO!" I did not sense any feelings of sympathy toward the refugees or the countries hosting them. Interestingly, this is the same response to any conversation regarding people of Fukushima. I wonder what they will have to say about the recent rain victims in northern Japan. It seems there is very little sympathy toward others. It may not be fair to call Japan a racist nation, across the board which JT wishes to avoid, understandably, but it seems extremely rare to find sincerely empathetic responses about human beings in need, be they in Japan or abroad.....just an observation based on over 3 decades of living here.....Maybe I'm not meeting the right people.

How does one say, "Oh, that is just heart-breaking" in Japanese? I am sure I have never heard this type of expression.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@willib "by some commentators here to shout "fox news" every time they want to critize some poster"

Fox News is a synonym of brainwashing machine and source of cheap, one-dimensional propaganda. If some poster confuses Iraq to Iran, he is definitely a viewer of Fox News. If some poster believes that the current european refugee crisis was created by Putin and Chinese communists, he is a victim of Fox News too.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Yesterday a shipment of food for the refugees was stopped at the Greek border. Wonder of wonders it didn't contain food, it was all military grade weapons. No we don't need refugees from Syria in this country. This is your typical Trojan horse.

https://youtu.be/xn-UCR5p0y0

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@Paige Q

Yesterday a shipment of food for the refugees was stopped at the Greek border

If the video in fact is real, I think it's hideous. Thanks for sending the link.

On another note, I understand we're able to have differences of opinions, but am curious why this post was given a thumbs down.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

OssanAmericaSEP. 10, 2015 - 08:01AM JST Europe is making a big mistake in the long run. The US is smart. So is Japan. Why in the world should a country in the Far East be "expected" to take refugees from the middle east, at Europe's doorsteps? I'm surprised that Japan takes any in. How many the CHINA THE SECOND BIGGES ECONOMIC POWER IN THE WORLD take in? How about South Korea?

South Korea is took five times more refugees last year than Japan did. The US is taking in thousands more refugees from Europe - Japan remains the only country to show no compassion. Why should they everyone asks? Why should anyone come to help Japan during the Tohoko disaster? Because this is a humanitarian disaster - these are humans, men, women and children in desperate need of a place to live. What difference does it make where they are now!? These people need help!

3 ( +7 / -4 )

If the video in fact is real, I think it's hideous. Thanks for sending the link.

curious why this post was given a thumbs down

Never forget that pinch of salt. The shipment was apparently stopped, by the Greek authorities yes, but headed to Libya. Nothing to do with the refugees.

http://www.disclose.tv/news/container_with_aid_for_refugees_was_full_of_weapons_and_ammunition/122167

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Thanks @Cleo.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"Japan has nothing to do with this." "Japan didn't caused this."

Isn't blindly and obsequiously following the U.S. lead in globally affairs for 70 years responsibility enough?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Not at all surprised. Refugees would be better served seeking out a more open and internationally-minded country. I like living in Japan, and like a lot about the culture, but it would be one of the last places I'd try to move to if I was a refugee, given the fact that it's hard enough even for many foreigners working in skilled trades with Japanese language ability to get visas to settle here, let alone a family in need that may not speak Japanese or have a "desired" skill set.

Hopefully some of the more compassionate countries in the world can continue to offer these folks a safe home.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japan for who they want to let in their country? It's the safest country in the world for a reason.

Japan is safer than most countries to be sure..but I am not sure if I would rank Japan the safest in the world ...just saying.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Todd Topolski: Good move for Japan. Don't invite in this mess your country has nothing at all to do with. This is a 7th century culture fleeing violent psychos and letting in the refugees will inevitably let in the violent psychos.

I wonder how different the world would be (or the US economy) if Abdulfattah Jandali, from Homs in Syria, had been denied a visa by US immigration because they feared a terrorist (or violent psycho) behind every bush? His son, Steve Jobs, would likely never have founded Apple Computers, and changed the world we live in.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

To begin with the basics no one has the obligation to help refugees or anyone else. The reason individuals and nations help people who need help, like refugees, is because they believe that compassion is a good thing and that it creates a greater good.

Japan's stance on refugees is not only xenophobic it is also hypocritical. The triple disaster in Tohoku created thousands of refugees instantly in their own neighborhoods. This is only sightly different from what the Syrians are facing with war in their land instead of a natural disaster. In the aftermath, of the Tohoku disaster, Japan had no problems with accepting donations and volunteers to help the disaster victims. The government also resettled many Tohoku refugees, particularly those needing to flee radioactive contamination from Fukushima, sometimes over the objections to local residents.

Japan has cheerfully accepted the world's help when it has been in trouble but is parsimonious in helping people seeking asylum. And as the world prepares to open its heart to the refugees fleeing war in Syria, Japan is clamping down. That is what the above headline and the article tell us. I find this creepy. This is truly showing the worst aspects of Japan (as well as certain posters).

Here is a fact that is not a happy one. Many, possibly most, of Syrian refugees are educated middle class middle class people. This is because it takes money to escape. They are not unlike those of us here in Japan who call ourselves "expats." We "expats" are accepted here because we are Westerners and really for no other reason.

But that is an aside.

Japan has no practical reason for refusing at least a couple of thousand refugees. There are hundred of depopulated villages that would likely welcome the company of additional people.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Japan is safer than most countries to be sure..but I am not sure if I would rank Japan the safest in the world ...just saying.

Which country is? Honest question.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

South Korea is took five times more refugees last year than Japan did.

Japan contributes 10.8% UN cost whereas SK merely 1.9% although the chief is SKorean and hiring lots of Skoreans in key posts.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Japan has cheerfully accepted the world's help when it has been in trouble but is parsimonious in helping people seeking asylum. And as the world prepares to open its heart to the refugees fleeing war in Syria, Japan is clamping down. That is what the above headline and the article tell us. I find this creepy. This is truly showing the worst aspects of Japan (as well as certain posters).

If any country dares to use these donations to criticize Japan for their so called lack of effort in regards to Syrian "refugees", they will be more than happy to return such donations plus interest incurred. Let's dispense this nonsense.

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

US will invite refugees, news reported. Because Nevada has shortage in work forces, municipal officials in So. NV telling they hope refugees come to our area than stay in cold East. food? Because many jewish live here that restaurants have no pork menu contents, .

2 ( +2 / -0 )

While much can be said of many religions, there is just one that is the cause of these refugees and their suffering in the first place.

This coming from the guy who just yesterday complained about "haters" always posting here on JT. Guess that door swings only one way, right?

Japan's stance on refugees is not only xenophobic it is also hypocritical. The triple disaster in Tohoku created thousands of refugees instantly in their own neighborhoods. This is only sightly different from what the Syrians are facing with war in their land instead of a natural disaster. In the aftermath, of the Tohoku disaster, Japan had no problems with accepting donations and volunteers to help the disaster victims. The government also resettled many Tohoku refugees, particularly those needing to flee radioactive contamination from Fukushima, sometimes over the objections to local residents.

Japan has cheerfully accepted the world's help when it has been in trouble but is parsimonious in helping people seeking asylum. And as the world prepares to open its heart to the refugees fleeing war in Syria, Japan is clamping down. That is what the above headline and the article tell us. I find this creepy. This is truly showing the worst aspects of Japan (as well as certain posters).

Here is a fact that is not a happy one. Many, possibly most, of Syrian refugees are educated middle class middle class people. This is because it takes money to escape. They are not unlike those of us here in Japan who call ourselves "expats." We "expats" are accepted here because we are Westerners and really for no other reason.

But that is an aside.

Japan has no practical reason for refusing at least a couple of thousand refugees. There are hundred of depopulated villages that would likely welcome the company of additional people.

kabukilover -- great, intelligent post -- which means it will get "thumbs down" here on JT. True "out-of-the-box" thinking -- solving Japan's "depopulation" problems while at the same time, providing refuge to these victims. Brilliant. Why don't you run for a seat in the Diet?

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

@anotherexpat: Interesting consensus from a group who are themselves essentially economic migrants and who seem to feel they deserve a place here because their skill set includes speaking their mother tongue, something they wouldn`t be paid for back home.

Well, nobody has ever welcomed me in Japan because I speak my mother tongue. But I can tell you why I feel I deserve a place here: because from the very first day, I began contributing to the welfare of the country. I (and many other expats) do not demand that the locals accommodate my religious believes, pay for my learning the local language, etc. I have worked hard for what I have achieved in Japan. This said, I do believe that asylum should be given to mothers (families) with children who are trying to escape war and permanent stay permission should be granted to everybody who does not abuse the system. Anybody else’s “application” should be subject to strict screening.

@igloobuyer: What difference does it make where they are now!?

It should not as long as they are in a place not threatened with war. Most of the refugees who are flooding Europe now, however, want to choose their destination and are heading to Germany, Austria, the UK, Sweden, etc. (as it seems) for the generous welfare benefits promised to them, I guess, by the people who got their money to get them to Europe.

Quite a few small countries in Europe (my home country among them) provided shelter and aid to the refugees of the “first wave.” Nobody questioned their right to escape the war in Syria and to look for a place where they do not have to live in constant fear of being bombed, raped or killed by random (and not so random) gunfire.

@ kabukilover: Japan has cheerfully accepted the world's help when it has been in trouble but is parsimonious in helping people seeking asylum.

Well, Japan is always one of the first countries to send volunteers and aid to any disaster stricken nations. The present humanitarian crisis in Europe, however, is a very different cup of tea. Wanting to protect its borders is every country’s right. Strict screening of asylum seekers is only in the interest of the nation whose interests the authorities should protect first.

We "expats" are accepted here because we are Westerners and really for no other reason.

Really? How about the work these expats are doing? I doubt I would be accepted (despite being a westerner) if I did not have the skills which keep me in the company I work for.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

kabukilover -- great, intelligent post -- which means it will get "thumbs down" here on JT. True "out-of-the-box" thinking -- solving Japan's "depopulation" problems while at the same time, providing refuge to these victims. Brilliant. Why don't you run for a seat in the Diet?

"out of the box"=out in left field. If Japan is really desperate about the "depopulation", there are more sane alternatives like giving amnesty to the current illegals and overstayers. At least they are desperate enough where they had no choice to adapt both in terms of language and cultural assimilation during their stay.

Come to think of it, Japan did allow dekasegi SA of Japanese decent but as the economy had a down turn, they became a burden. It's tame compared to the "undocumented immigrants", it's a burden nonetheless.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Thank you jersey boy. May I point out the obvious. The Syrian refugees are not undocumented immigrants or overstayers in Japan. They are not here. They have not even indicated they want to be here. Yet they are already being dumped on by the resident yahoos.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

It makes no sense to say "Japanese should not have to take any Syrian refugees because it was Western powers who created the mess." You may as well blame Turkey for not staying neutral in WW!. Or even the sun without which there would be no refugees because there would be no life on this planet.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

United States announced it will welcome 10,000 people next year. Also CNN anchorman stated there are several million people are in tent shelters in Saudi Arabia. It also mentioned name of countries that will not accept any refujgees Japan was not mentioned,

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Toshiko:

" United States announced it will welcome 10,000 people next year. "

You can be sure that this number will multiply before the year is up. Already in Canada, with a population 1/10 of the US; the liberals are pushing to accept 40,000.

" Also CNN anchorman stated there are several million people are in tent shelters in Saudi Arabia. "

Do you have another source for that than your "CNN anchorman"? All reports that I have have read say that Saudi Arabia has accepted zero refugees. Zilch. None. Nada. Yes, there are 500,000 Syrians in Saudi, but they came as workers, not as refugees.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@willB: I only watch news channels when I eat early breakfast so no other source. Those anchorman did not say Syrian people. Just mentioned tent people.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Having read many of the comments here by readers (like myself) who are living in Japan only because we were allowed to get some type of visa, it rather amazes me how many likes are attached to what can only be seen as bigoted comments. It is one thing to be bigoted and xenophobic in one's home country, but quite another to say that certain races or religions are not welcome in an adopted country where one's visa could be removed at any given moment or twist of policy. When push comes to shove, this government is not going to make any distinctions between believers of "a 7th Century" religion and those who believe a "zero" Century or a "pre-zero Century" religion! All things being equal, foreign is as foreign does when the doors close!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

nigelboy: As to why there are few who are granted refugee status, I pasted this on a related article.

http://www.bengo4.com/other/1146/1307/n_2924/

It states that most all came to Japan on a perfectly legal visa (tourist, education, trainee) but as soon as their respective visa is about to expire, they applied for refugee status.

Why don't they just get one of those "refugee visas" Japan is so freely tossing about?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@jpntdaytmorrow: How does one say, "Oh, that is just heart-breaking" in Japanese? I am sure I have never heard this type of expression.

'''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Shinzouga harisakeru youna itamashii hanashi desu ne. '

Just one of too many expressions since you wrote heart, I wrote one that includes heart. There are many expressions that contain heart ache. Read Japanese novels that are sad story speciality.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

jpntdytmrow:

" but quite another to say that certain races or religions are not welcome in an adopted country "

Firstly, nobody here was talking about "races". Secondly, yes if a religion is combined with a political ideology that is contrary to our societies then we should absolutely address that. The mainstream media only show sympathetic pictures, but have you seen the video of Syrian "refugees" on German trains, shouting "Allahu Akbar", the islamic battly cry? These are mainly bearded young Sunni men, and if this flow continues, they will change European society profoundly. And not in a way you would wish for.

Here is an interesting thought experiment: Try to show a Mohammed cartoon to these young, muscular refugees. What do you think will happen?`Do you seriously believe the understand and accept our Western concept of freedom of speech? And of separation of religion and state?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

If Japan doesn't tighten control of its borders, it will be lost, just like the west. No country is more doomed than the one with open borders.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

toshikoSep. 12, 2015 - 09:23AM JST Thank you toshiko!

@jpntdaytmorrow: How does one say, "Oh, that is just heart-breaking" in Japanese? I am sure I have never heard this type of expression.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''' Shinzouga harisakeru youna itamashii hanashi desu ne. '

Just one of too many expressions since you wrote heart, I wrote one that includes heart. There are many expressions that contain heart ache. Read Japanese novels that are sad story speciality.

Two Germans I know personally wrote of their own experiences as child refugees. The elder crossed the Oder River in 1945 when her family was expelled from land they had called home for hundreds of years just 3 km away. Remembering that experience and hardship, she said she welcomed them. Her tiny town was accepting 200 or so. The other friend escaped with his siblings and parents August 13, 1961 from East Berlin to West Berlin. Each child was sent to an orphanage until parents settled and could raise them. Recalling his hardship and that experience, he wrote that it was an exciting time and they are more than willing to help these people in their times of need. I was impressed. In high school, I commuted by city bus and talked each morning with an Afghan refugee in the early '80's. I can still recall some of the conversations we had. Nah, I think it will work out. No need to show cartoons to refugees anyway. They are busy trying to stay alive.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan accepts a lot more than 10 refugees- they just aren't classified as refugees. Nearly every single Chinese immigrant is a refugee- its a country that has declared one seventh of its population as enemies- Falun Gong practitioners, minorities and religious people. Its a waste to give to UNCR - its such a corrupt organisation with expensive buildings and high priced personnel. Sure they should work on their acceptance of "foreigners" by working with Japanese on the cultural development but laws mean nothing everywhere- things only changed in the 1960's US when people rejected racism.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

jpntday: Japan welcomed Myanmer boat people recently. Maybe not counted as immigrant but as guests or future job fillers?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

jpntdytmrow

" Two Germans I know personally wrote of their own experiences as child refugees. The elder crossed the Oder River in 1945 when her family was expelled from land they had called home for hundreds of years just 3 km away. "

They were escaping to a society they were fully willing to integrate in and to support. They were not "escaping" to a society that is described in their religion as evil and in need to be submitted under their god (the "house of war - dar al Harb"). And they were truly in rags, hungry and carrying their last possessions --- compare that with the figures of well-fed, healthy young men that are the vast majority of the people heading for Germany now. Your comparising is a bit tasteless.

" I think it will work out. No need to show cartoons to refugees anyway. "

There absolutely is. Are they willing to accept the German constitution that says freedom of speech is proitected, or are they willing to murder for their ideoloy which is diametrically opposed to everything the German constituion stands for? Remember, they already had Koran riots in reffugee camps in Germany. Someone found a ripped out page from a Koran, and the inhabitants went completely berserk, trying to kill one they accused of having done it.

And yes, you might as well replace the Mohammed cartoon with an Israeli flag. The reaction would be the same. And this, in your opinion, is what German society needs?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

"Please do clamp down Japan. I don't want to the problems in Japan that the other countries have.

I agree with gaijin6000 on the above comment. Could not have said it any better.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Who's apologizing for anything? The overwhelming majority of Muslims in western nations haven't done anything for which they need to apologize.

Except for the radicals killing forging on with their caliphate displacing millions of people. so while you are correct that the majority of muslims don't need to apologize, EVERY Muslim nation regardless of tribalism and the various fighting factions that persist have a moral obligation to do whatever they can and then some to take as many as they can and then look to the world for help and assistance. Like you always said, the ME should worry about their own problems. Europe doesn't need to burden itself or the rest of the world and if the Asian countries are so concerned with the plight of these refugees, then they need to do more on their part and take in a big chunk as well.

And for that and the chaos, I do think the Muslims nations need to apologize or do you think the leaders like Assad get a pass for causing this situation?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

In what world do you see the radicals not having to apologize for anything? Because that's who I spoke of, and you tried to include the radicals in that group?

Yes.

As for the rest of your comments, do you apologize for the KKK or other neo nazi groups in Europe, do you apologize for the Westboro Baptist Church? Do you apologize for Timothy McVeigh? If not you're a hypocrite.

So you want to go back in time to Nazi Germany, a few people from a whacko church and one lone anti-government isolationist? That's it? Now you compare that to the last 14 years of atrocities the radical Islamists committed? Strange, sometimes, dude......

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There are many ignorant posters here blaming immigration and multi-culturalism for all of Europe's ills, which is utter codswallop.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Nearly every single Chinese immigrant is a refugee-

That's not true. Then there are still way more Chinese in Europe than in Japan. You can turn things the way you want, the result is still that Sakoku (Japan if you prefer) is a closed, egoistic and xenophobic country (and yes, moderator, I have not even started with racism). It's their right. It's their right to be seen as a bad country that has remained just as insensitive as it was in the 1930's and 1940's, it's their right to be disliked, even hated, by the world. Like North Koreans have their right to life the Japanese way.

I don't want to the problems in Japan that the other countries have

I've spent 1/3 of my life in Japan and I have not a hint about what you mean about problems Japan doesn't have. The collective coldness is probably the biggest if not the only reason of my departure. I've started finding harder to feel human fellowship with Japanese people after the way they reacted to 3.11.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Japan is just watching how Europe and US will handle all this refugees came from Syria if it's going well, they'll accept it. But the reality is a different kind of story, refugees can be terrorist infiltrated, Japan have already socio-economic problems why they want more problems? They want is college degrees with experience can aport to the society and not be a menace for the goodwill of their citizens. Refugees came from to many psychological issues and religion believes " for the view of point Europe, America, UK and any allied are the causes their countries is in war, and everybody is not agree with their religion is their enemy " You will accept someone in your house, if you know that person think is your fault their country is in war, and hate everything about your culture, your view of point. I'm pretty sure for the sake of my family members I won't. I don't know about you, if you are willing to risk your family members.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@nigelboy

As to why there are few who are granted refugee status, I pasted this on a related article. http://www.bengo4.com/other/1146/1307/n_2924/ It states that most all came to Japan on a perfectly legal visa (tourist, education, trainee) but as soon as their respective >visa is about to expire, they applied for refugee status.

The 1951 convention amended in 1967 does not consider entering to a country with a proper visa a reason to not ask for a refugee status should you fear for your safety back in your country, the convention also assume that a refugee can enter the country even without any visa and eventually will violate the emigration law, and if Japan is refusing the status based on what you mentioned (having a proper visa) then Japan is violating the convention. Let's just copy past the "simple" definition of a refugee for the sake of clarity :

The emphasis of this definition is on the protection of persons from political or other forms of persecution. A refugee, according to the Convention, is someone who is unable or unwilling to return to their country of origin owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion.

You do not need a war but if there is a war, specially a religion war and you fear to be killed then you could apply.

Now the convention is also very clear about the following which is the total opposite of what we can read here by many posters :

Convention provisions, for example, are to be applied without discrimination as to race, religion or country of origin.

Here some posters are all about using discrimination, race, religion and country of origin to give the refugee status.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The 1951 convention amended in 1967 does not consider entering to a country with a proper visa a reason to not ask for a refugee status should you fear for your safety back in your country, the convention also assume that a refugee can enter the country even without any visa and eventually will violate the emigration law, and if Japan is refusing the status based on what you mentioned (having a proper visa) then Japan is violating the convention. Let's just copy past the "simple" definition of a refugee for the sake of clarity :

That's not what the article states. It states that only 10% of the 5,000 applicants fall within 'political' aspects of the convention itself while many are rejected simply because their intention is to work and reside in Japan. The reason why the article mentions the vast majority of these 'asylum seekers' came via legally is because under the revised 2010 law, they can work after 6 months of the actual filing of the application.

さきほど述べたように、正規の在留者から難民申請があった場合、申請から6カ月経てば、就労が認められます。2010年3月から導入された措置ですが、これを機に、認定申請数が増えています。

0 ( +2 / -2 )

First I agree stop saying Japan is a racist country, cause it is not. I have lived there, did training from work there and visited wife's family there on many trips. I feel more welcome in Japan than in home country USA. I find it funny how so many other countries tell other countries to let foreign people in regardless of following laws. Yet if you go to these countries illegally they put you in jail. People should respect other countries laws when there legally. Japan has the right to protect its people and country.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The only asylum seekers from the MS I would grant permission to stay would be non-Muslims.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

First I agree stop saying Japan is a racist country, cause it is not. I have lived there, did training from work there and visited wife's family there on many trips. I feel more welcome in Japan than in home country USA

Are you caucasian? This is very important cause if you are of cause you are 'more welcome' in Japan than other ethnic groups. Treating a certain ethic group better than the others is exactly what bigots do.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Is Japan even on the minds of Syrians fleeing Syria?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I see that the holier-than-thou western saviours and champions of the oppressed are out in full force. They want us to know how terrible it is that some nation can refuse to take in scores and scores of migrants! - my god, national sovereignty, how dare they! I'm sorry but no thank you. Dear western bleeding hearts, you can keep your mass immigration programs. You can keep your social problems, terrorism, welfare dependency, housing/job/education/employment crisis. Other nations don't want to follow your example. When you go extinct in a hundred years from all your immigration, let us know how it feels and we'll hold a funeral for you race and culture.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

why blame japan????.how many did the US took in?.who do you think started all this in the first place? ask yourself before blaming others.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Good for Japan. These cowards should be fighting for their country instead of running away. And why must everyone else, except their neighboring countries, take these people in? Sorry to sound cruel but, oh well.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

What ever country takes in refugees, it must be considered that there may be some that are not really refugees but belong to groups that want to hurt the western way of life. All refugees need to be screened well and background checks done. I do not blame Japan for wanting to cut down on taking in more refugees.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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