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'Jesus taught us to respect refugees': Jeremy Corbyn's Easter message highlights migration crisis

Sun 21 Apr 2019
By Eno Adeogun

The Labour leader has used his Easter message to compare the suffering endured by Jesus during his life to the challenges faced by refugees today.

Jeremy Corbyn said Christ's experiences as a refugee are "still familiar to us today" and the current migration crisis is a "moral test" for politicians.

Mr Corbyn accused the Government of failing to take in child refugees and criticised Home Secretary Sajid Javid's handling of the cross-Channel migrant boats over the winter.

 

He said Jesus was "a refugee whose parents were forced to flee their home because of a campaign of terror by a dictator, King Herod".

"Jesus went on to know what it was to be ostracised, rejected and tortured," he said.

"A family forced to flee their homeland for fear of persecution.

 

"Sadly, this is still so familiar to us today. There are 68 million refugees across the world, more people than have ever before been forced to flee persecution, war and abject poverty.

"The refugee crisis is a moral test. Jesus taught us to respect refugees. He himself said 'welcome the stranger'.

"And the Bible says 'the foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born'.

 

"In Britain, we have a proud history of providing a safe refuge to those in need. But this Government refuses to meet our legal obligations to child refugees in Europe as required by the Dubs Amendment.

"At the end of last year as refugees tried to cross the Channel, Sajid Javid threatened to deploy the Navy. But in response, the Bishop of Dover said 'it is crucial that we all remember we are dealing with human beings here'."

He said churches are leading the way in offering support to refugees and added: "We can learn from Christian values and offer the hand of friendship to welcome those in need."

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