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tv   Escape to Paraguay  BBC News  April 23, 2022 1:30pm-2:01pm BST

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this is bbc world news — the headlines. the ukrainian government urges the un to do more to help bring the estimated 100,000 people trapped inside the city of mariupol to safety. campaigning has ended in france's presidential election, as emmanuel macron and his far—right rival marine le pen urge people to turn out and vote on sunday. downing street confirms the prime minister has not yet received any further fines for breaking lockdown rules. supermarkets across the uk are limiting how much cooking oil customers are able to buy, as supplies are hit by the war in ukraine.
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and tyson fury will take on dillian whyte later, in what's expected to be one of the biggest all—british heavyweight fights in boxing history. now on bbc news, escape to paraquay. bbc mundo�*s mar michel has been finding out why a group of towns in the south american country has suddenly seen a spike in new settlers. 0n the banks of the parana river, built among some of paraguay�*s most fertile land, hohenau, 0bligado and bella vista, or the united colonies. these german settlements were first established more than 100 years ago by immigrants wanting to farm the land. recently, paraguay has seen a new wave of german immigration. babbles
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yes, we have a problem in germany, but it is not so easy to talk about this problem. but that's not all. we've been told that in the last four weeks, at least 1,200 people have entered the country illegally. so can that be true? are german immigrants really breaking into paraguay? and if so, why? it's one of the oldest
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cities in south america. asuncion, the capital of a nation built on immigration. paraguay lost half its population during the triple alliance war of 1864, fighting against brazil, uruguay and argentina, and opened its doors to immigrants from all over the world as it tried to repair. in the early 1900s, almost 400km south of the capital, a handful of german families, led by a man named wilhelm closs, began to build the united colonies, and thousands more would follow. germans escaping nazis during the second world war fled to the united colonies, and ironically, nazis themselves fleeing justice back home would find sanctuary here too. since then, there's been a steady stream of immigration — untiljune 2021, when suddenly the numbers began to accelerate.
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so i made the six—hourjourney from asuncion to the colonies to meet some of the new arrivals. "fuhl dich wie zu hause." it means, "feel like you are at home." and for thousands of germans who have arrived here in recent months, this really is home now. amongst them, the hausens — two—year—old ella, her mum teresa, and dad stephan. they moved to paraguay in novemberfrom nuremberg. but why? laughs
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like so many others, for the hausens, it was the covid—19 pandemic which pushed them to leave germany. corona might well have been the final straw for this
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family, but there was another reason they decided to move. we'll come back to them later. michael schwartz is another new arrival — an architect from stuttgart. he dreamt of building his own german community here in hohenau. but when nobody would move with him, he decided to pack up and come alone. many people tell about vaccination, but this is not the main thing for me. i want to have blue sky. not so much clouds, cloudy, and not so much rain. and i want warm weather and i want to do many things outside. and, of course, tax. 0k. taxes. taxes is a big problem in germany. many people say in germany, we have the most taxes in the world, but the money
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is not put in for the people who live in germany long time. corona changed many things. 0k. over one million people lost their companies. so the pandemic, the situation with the pandemic played a role in your decision to come to... but the methods are the problem, not the pandemic or corona is not the problem, because what they do is wrong. they destroy the infrastructure. and what about the vaccination rules? what do you think? yeah. vaccination is now a big, big problem, that you don't, um, allow to criticise this. are you vaccinated? no, no. no. i don't do it because there are many questions with this vaccination. many doubts. doubts. do you think you can live here without vaccination?
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yes. yes, yes. but there is a campaign. it's not so that all paraguay find it good, this vaccination. many paraguayans say no. well, but vaccines save millions of lives. when you see the figures and you compare with the old vaccination, for other, er... it is much, much, much more people have problems with this vaccination. and then, you know, from the man who create this test, that the test is not...able... ..to show infection. this is fact. but this is incorrect. pcr tests do accurately diagnose corona, and that's not the only misconception we have discovered among the newcomers. covid measures here are actually quite strict. vaccine certificates and pcrs are carefully checked.
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you can find hand—washing stations like this outside virtually every public place, and masks are commonplace. but the fear among the locals is that some of the new arrivals don't feel that these rules apply to them. it's a big worry, especially as paraguay had the highest number of covid deaths per capita anywhere in the world when this new spike of immigration began.
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the country is running a national campaign to inoculate the population, so unvaccinated immigrants are a worry for the mayor. and then the mayor says something that confuses me.
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in january this year, paraguay made it mandatory for all non—residents entering the country to be vaccinated. since then, message boards have been filled with ways to get around the rules. michael and the hausens arrived legally and through the airport. but since the rules changed, we're told german citizens have been breaking into the country illegally through its porous borders. "juan", not his real name, is a government official. he's risking his job to speak to us, because he's angry.
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he says paraguay had to change the rules because of the immigrants. but they are still entering without that certificate. how is that happening?
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paraguay is surrounded by bolivia, argentina and brazil. with limited resources, policing the perimeter is not easy. juan says this means illegal immigrants are easily able to enter the country and bypass the covid checks. he says corrupt officials then legitimise their paperwork. the bbc cannot independently verinyuan�*s figures. estimates we've received differ hugely. in response tojuan�*s allegations, the government told us...
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they added... untranslated conversation noemi jara works in the tourism office. she's in the business of welcoming people, but she's worried that double standards have become the norm. noemi goes farther. she says she often feels belittled by the new arrivals.
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but that isn't the end of this story. it is notjust the pandemic driving this new wave of immigration. newsreader: angela merkel is absolutely putting on the - pressure, and has been doing sow — since 2015, around 1.5 million migrants, many of whom had fled war in afghanistan, iraq and syria, have entered germany in response to former chancellor angela merkel�*s open door policy.
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but the strategy has led to tensions at home, and some say fuelled a rise in the far right. stephan and teresa say the main reason they emigrated to paraguay was to protect their daughter from the "influences" of islam.
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what's the difference between muslims arriving in germany and you europeans arriving in this country?
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stephan says he's been warmly welcomed in paraguay. i asked him why the same welcome couldn't be extended to immigrants in germany. the husband's position is not unique. in fact, every german immigrant
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we spoke to during our visit cited muslims in germany as one of the main reasons they left the country. "hana", not her real name, left her home in germany four years ago. we worked very hard. a0 years long. now she helps germans settle in paraguay. she refuses to show her face on camera, because she says she is sick of bad
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press campaigns. but they are protecting their children from what, exactly? but that is a strong accusation. do you have, or do they have any evidence of that? what would you say to people who think that argument is racist, that you are being racist?
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i pointed out to hana that the new immigrants who are breaking into paraguay in order to flout the country's covid rules are not being respectful. hana herself is not vaccinated, and tested positive for covid—19 later that day. coughs but this is not... this is not a campaign.
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this is what is happening. there are some people from germany who are entering illegally the country, because they don't have the vaccine certificate. no, no, of course not all of them. but this is a... this is a illegal thing. of course, those sort of things are legal things and they have the right to do that, to start a new life
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in a new country. but since january. .. ..for enter paraguay, you have to show your vaccine certificate, and these people are entering through all the borders to escape that control. that is illegal. betweenjune 2021 and march 2022, just over 1,300 new residence permits were issued to german immigrants, but the true number of new settlers is thought to be much higher. the exact number of illegal immigrants remains unknown. paraguay has a long history of welcoming migrants from all over the world. it's a part of the fabric of society.
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they are proud to be open and inclusive, and they say that while this new wave of immigration is welcome, any kind of prejudice is not. it's just un—paraguayan. it has opinion a cloudy start but we are starting to see the cloud thin and break. sunshine coming through, and break. sunshine coming through, and that is how things started off in scarborough. we are seeing sunny
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skies working into iron area, look at this area of cloud to the north of the uk, and the north atlantic, this cloud extensive, it is going to be swinging into the uk into next week, so that will be a factor, over the next few days but for the time being we have our own lump of cloud. it started to consecret and that is starting to form shower, there are a few at the moment going in across the midlands, the showers in the next few hours become fairly widespread in wales. all the while brisk north—easterly winds, flowing in over the chilly waters of the north sea, adding to a certain cool tonnes the air round the eastern coastal areas, so 13—15 degree, the highest temperatures again across the south and west, 17 for cardiff, an for london, in the sunshine out the breeze it doesn't feel too bad. 0vernight tonight there is the threat of more rain skirting into the south for a time. 0therwise clear skies for the most part. staying cloudy for northern
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scotland. temperatures for many about 3—7. tomorrow, i think we are looking at a fine day for the most part with spells of sunshine, morning an afternoon and on the whole there should be fewer showers round. northern scotland, plagued by some fairly low cloud. again the highest temperatures away from the east coast, 18s for london and for cardiff. for monday, we are looking at something of a change. there backbench greater number of showers, particularly for ian england. 0therwise, still a fair amount of drier weather with o cloud coming and going. temperatures on the whole just easing down a degree or two, given a bit more cloud round. for tuesday that area of cloud does is that right toter come down the north sea, and then move in land, so really tuesday looks like being a cloudy day, the best of any limited sunny spells would be in western areas and the thes the, just nine for aberdeen and for newcastle. and
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later in the week that cloud still a factor in the forecast for most. it looks like being a cloudy and relatively cool spell of weather, the best of limited sunshine in western areas, so western england, wales and northern ireland having the best of the sunshine for next week. that is your latest weather. bye for now.
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this is bbc news — welcome if you're watching here in the uk or around the globe. i'm ben boulos. ukraine says russian forces have resumed attempts to storm the azovstal steel plant — the final pocket of ukrainian resistance in the city of mariupol. campaigning ends in france's presidential election — with emmanuel macron and his far—right rival marine le pen urging people to turn out and vote on sunday. i'm david eades live in la courneuve — just outside paris — where we'll be looking ahead to tomorrow's vote. downing street confirms britain's prime minister — borisjohnson — has not yet received any further fines for breaking lockdown rules. supermarkets across the uk
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are limiting how much cooking oil customers are able to buy — as supplies are hit

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