World Refugee Day marked in Riga

Around 100 people marked the forthcoming World Refugee Day due to take place June 20 on Wednesday at a special United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR)-backed event at the Stockholm School of Economics in the Latvian capital.

The event was also attended by Red Cross mentors who are currently working with asylum seekers and Carl Bjoršmarks, an integration expert from Sweden currently in Latvia to train local workers.

Importantly, the event gave a voice to refugees themselves too, including Robel Tagess, a recent arrival to the country from Greece under the European Union's controversial refugee distribution scheme.

Robel stressed that refugees need only a little help in order to participate in society just like anyone else.

Stockholm School of Economics student Ingus Zeļenkovs after the event shared his impressions on Facebook, saying: "Being able to talk to them [refugees] I am touched, and it shattered many narrow-minded preconceptions that people often express."

World Refugee Day is marked every year, officially on June 20 but with various events around that date.

On Thursday UNHCR launched a major campaign that asks the world to stand together #WithRefugees.

It comes with a video message featuring various celebrities urging sympathy with the plight of refugees (below).

 

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