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Vaira Vike-Freiberga on Migrants Day: "I spent part of my childhood in refugee camps"

Vaira Vike-Freiberga on Migrants Day: "I spent part of my childhood in refugee camps"

December 18, 2016

 The biography of the Club de Madrid President and former President of Latvia, Vaira Vike-Freiberga, includes the experience of being forced to leave her country with a very short notice and just "an old doll that I was allowed to take with me". Her personal journey as a migrant, first in Morocco and then in Canada, makes her story woth of listening in this International Migrant Day.

"I know what it means to have to give up what you are born with and have to go through many challenges before you become something else" says Vike-Freiberga. "Migrants and refugees have a stressful first period. It's very demanding, with no friends, not knowing the language or the local costumes" she adds. That's why the most important thing is that "the people who live in your new country will look at you with kindness and accept you as a human being".

However, the attitudes towards migrants vary along the world as well as the "capability to absorb and accept people from other countries". It very much depends on the political and economic situation but also on "the williness on both sides to accept foreigners and to adopt new ways of life".

 

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Club de Madrid
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