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IRC Calls Immigration Bill a Disaster for Refugees and Asylum-Seekers

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AGENDA21 Donating Member (862 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-10-06 03:11 PM
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IRC Calls Immigration Bill a Disaster for Refugees and Asylum-Seekers
The International Rescue Committee is urging Senators to reject provisions of proposed legislation that it says will have a harmful impact on refugees and asylum- seekers fleeing conflict and persecution.

As Judiciary Committee debate began this week on a draft immigration bill sponsored by Senator Arlen Specter, the IRC sent a letter to committee members expressing concern that the bill "would make it more difficult for qualified refugees to gain access to protection in the United States" and that it contravenes an international convention that aims to assure such protection.

The letter, signed by IRC President George Rupp, former Intel Chairman and refugee from Hungary Andrew Grove, Reagan-era Deputy Secretary of State John Whitehead and some 40 other board members of the IRC, expresses particular concern about proposed measures that would punish individuals with hefty prison terms for aiding undocumented aliens.

"We are deeply concerned that these provisions would turn well-meaning Americans into criminals for nothing more than making casual contact, performing acts of kindness or fulfilling organizational missions to provide humanitarian assistance or counsel," the letter says.

http://www.m2.com/m2/web/story.php/2006A3F263705ACB5688...
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