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Pajares, Miguel

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La Vanguardia - Spain | 06/06/2006

Miguel Pajares on immigration's economic advantages

The Catalonian sociologist Miguel Pajares calls for "a major change in perceptions of immigration" in Spanish society, confronted with the daily arrival of immigrants on the coasts of the Canary Islands. "The constant stream of immigrants to Spain is considered one of the primary factors driving the country's economic growth. ... Yet Spaniards continue to perceive immigration as the country's second biggest problem. There is an enormous contradiction here. ... Why can't the current Socialist government convey a positive message on immigration, and why does it make illegal immigration the focus of all its speeches, presenting it as a threat to society? ... Politicians prefer to denigrate immigration because it brings them more votes, and the xenophobic message is gaining ever more ground, offering a bounty at the polls for those who exploit the theme."

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