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Portnikov, Vitaly

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Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Russia - Russia | 18/09/2015

Exodus to Europe: Vitaly Portnikov fears the fear of the foreign

It is not the presence of foreigners that should worry Europeans in these times of the largest wave of migration since World War II, but the fact that this fear of foreigners exists at all, warns Ukrainian-Jewish journalist Vitaly Portnikov on the website of the Russian service of Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty: "I belong to the nation of refugees. For how many centuries did we wander from city to city and country to country on Europe's roads? … What they said about us is virtually the same as what is being said about the Arabs today. Our religion was strange, our traditions were uncivilised, our language was incomprehensible. … I am not afraid of refugees. I am afraid of those who seek the causes of disaster among foreigners rather than among themselves. … Compassion is one of the values that made the post-war continent, a world full of refugees, the Europe it is today. If we turn our backs on this value there will not only be no more Schengen. There will be no more Europe."

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