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Thursday, 7 February, 2002, 06:52 GMT
Refugee finds UK safe haven
Dr Dilzar Kader
Dr Dilzar Kader's has made a new life in England
An Iraqi Kurd doctor will be held up as an example to other refugees by Home Secretary David Blunkett.

Dr Dilzar Kader who fled persecution is beginning work as paediatrician at a London hospital after retraining to work in Britain.


I feel like England is my home

Dr Dilzar Kader

Mr Blunkett hopes this success story will prove an inspiration to other refugees as he unveils his White Paper on nationality, immigration and asylum.

Mr Kader has rebuilt his life in Britain with his family after leaving Iraq four years ago.

Radical reforms

The 48-year-old has now begun a full-time post with Northwick Park hospital in Harrow.

He is being held up as a role model by Mr Blunkett ahead of his expected announcement that immigrants will be required to have a working grasp of English and an understanding of British institutions.

Mr Kader said: "I think language is very very important. Not knowing the language is a great barrier not just to finding a job but to socialising and organising your personal affairs."

He feels that he has settled well into living in the UK.

"I feel like England is my home, I don't behave like a stranger," he said.

Mr Blunkett was heavily criticised last December when he called on ethnic minorities to help racial integration by learning to speak English and adopting British "norms of acceptability".

Support network

The doctor began a medical training programme and an English language course after he was granted refugee status.

He has sat and passed exams set by the Royal College of Paediatricians and Child Health and has further clinical courses to take.

He was also helped in finding employment by the Wembley-based organisation Refugees into Jobs.

"They have helped me and many others to take the right courses," he said.

And he emphasised how important it was to have a network of refugee organisations to help with training, employment and adjusting to living in Britain.

But he said his experience of living in England had been a happy one.

"Northwick Park was very very generous, they offered their trust and support and humanity and friendship to me."

See also:

07 Feb 02 | UK Politics
Asylum shake-up to be unveiled
31 Jan 02 | UK Politics
Asylum seekers given 'smart' ID cards
15 Jan 02 | UK Politics
Longer sentences for people smugglers
10 Dec 01 | UK Politics
Blair backs Blunkett on race
09 Dec 01 | UK Politics
Immigrants 'should try to feel British'
29 Oct 01 | UK Politics
Asylum shake-up at a glance
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