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Turkey’s potential xenophobia goes beyond Syrian refugees

Growing popular resentment of refugees and migrants is on course to become the second hot-button election topic in Turkey after the economic crisis, but the government is not in a position to force the return of Syrians, the main component of the problem.
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The danger of xenophobia is rising in Turkey as controversy grows over millions of refugees and irregular migrants in the country, ahead of elections next year.

The issue goes beyond the Syrian refugees that Turkey has hosted since the Syrian civil war erupted in 2011. Popular resentment has been fueled by the growing number of illegal migrants and has come to affect even Middle Easterners and Asians arriving as tourists. As facts and figures are being jumbled, popular anger at severe economic hardships is being dangerously channeled into a general animosity toward foreigners.

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