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The Foundation for Progress Chile (FPP) published this Tuesday a video of a conversation, from 2017, between the organization’s president, Axel Kaiser, and Niall Ferguson, the British historian and academic.
In the interview, they discussed the challenges of immigration, multiculturalism and integration. Kaiser highlighted the importance of orderly migration for growth and cultural exchange.
Ferguson explained that as a migrant he cannot say that immigration is a negative thing. What is important, he argues, is that countries create strategies that allow for the integration of cultures.
“The problem is not immigration. The problem is the failure to assimilate, the failure to integrate newcomers into the society that receives them,” Ferguson said.
He also stressed that immigration has been a source of creativity and dynamism. He explained that migrants have made countries like the United States and Chile what they are today.
On immigration in Europe
Ferguson also referred to Europe’s strategy for welcoming immigrants. In this regard, he indicated that, in his opinion, the mistake has been in allowing European culture to be changed by new ways of life that have nothing to do with their customs.
He commented that the problem occurs when individual cultural spaces are generated instead of allowing the correlation of the different lifestyles.
Ferguson added that the integration of all citizens is necessary to have a successful migratory strategy.
“In mosques, Muslim schools, and Islamic centers, there are sustained efforts to prevent Muslims from assimilating. There are also efforts to make them resist integration and this is systematic,” he said.