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03 May 2018

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Cristiano Ronaldo is a Portuguese citizen who has been employed in England and Spain for most of his career. Photo: Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

When We Think of Migrants, Why Not Include Einstein and Ronaldo?

(The Guardian) – When most people hear the word “migration” or “migrants”, they probably think of people crammed on small boats, fleeing to Greece or Italy. I doubt the word “migrant” conjures up images of Cristiano Ronaldo, Kate Winslet or Albert Einstein. That’s not what people mean when they talk about migrants. But it should be.

The most successful football player in the world, an actor in the second most successful film of all time, and one of the smartest people in history are technically all migrants. I’m not cherrypicking here either. My own research shows that 55% of international footballers, almost half of the best actor and best actress Oscar nominees since 2000, and about one third of Nobel prize nominees since 1901 were migrants.

The UN migration agency defines a migrant as “any person who is moving or has moved across an international border or within a state away from his/her habitual place of residence, regardless of legal status; reason/cause for the movement; or length of the stay in the destination country.”

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  • Front Page Africa ran an op-ed which noted that it has been nearly two months since it broke the news of Liberians being stranded in Sudan and Algeria. 

  • Quartz published a story about how how an illiterate woman wrote love letters to her migrant husband in 1973.
  • BBC reported about an Austrian organisation, Equalizent, based in Vienna, which provides courses in sign language and written German for asylum seekers and refugees from Iraq, Afghanistan and Iran.
  • New Statesman reported that the UK government must abolish the net migration target as a rational immigration system should be based on needs, not numbers.