Mercury (Hobart) - Magazine - - UP FRONT -

This po­lit­i­cally loaded term is some­times used in a dis­parag­ing fash­ion, along with “asy­lum seeker”, to ques­tion the rights of peo­ple flee­ing op­pres­sion in trou­bled parts of the world such as Kenya, South Su­dan, Syria and Iraq. There is some irony in the fact the first time “refugee” was used in English was to de­scribe a bunch of white Protes­tants flee­ing per­se­cu­tion by the French King Louis XIV about 1685. The term came from the French “refugie”, and was soon adopted to de­scribe any­one flee­ing from dan­ger or tyranny, whether it be po­lit­i­cal or reli­gious.

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