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Austrian theologians urge openness to refugees

March 22, 2016

Fifty Austrian theologians, heads of religious communities, and Church officials recently signed a declaration on refugee policy in which they described “the protection of people in need, who are fleeing war, violence, and persecution,” as “a key element of Christianity, humanity, and our modern human rights culture.”

In February, Austria announced a cap on the number of migrants entering the country.

“Short-term policies and measures, based on national interests and unilateral decision-making, risk weakening the EU and destabilizing other EU member states,” the theologians stated, as they lamented “incitement to hatred and xenophobia, the dissemination of false information about refugees, and opposition to the reception of asylum seekers in Austria.”

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