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00:00:00
>>
APPLAUSE
>> The rise of anti-immigration sentiment which has played a big role in surprise election results, like the Brexit vote and President Donald Trump, has energized politicians from all over the globe. From Austria to France to all the way to Chile. Reuters correspondent Anthony Esposito says a wave of recent arrivals to the country has changed the political landscape.
00:00:25
>> Immigration is shaping up to be a big issue in Chile's 2017 presidential election. Immigrants from Haiti and Venezuela have surged over the last two years as they escape political and economic strife in those countries and come to more prosperous and stable Chile. Politicians on both the left and right have taken advantage of the situation to talk tough on immigration and on occasion scapegoat those immigrants.
00:00:52
>> Former President Sebastian Pinera, a billionaire, has become the front runner to represent the right-wing coalition in November's election. And Esposito says his nationalist rhetoric may sound familiar to American voters.>> He has called immigrants criminals and has blamed Chili's current immigration laws, which date from the 1970s, for forming criminal gangs, mainly in areas of the country that have the highest concentrations of immigrants.
00:01:24
>> Chili's government migration office says immigrants commit fewer crimes than Chileans. And the country's interior undersecretary has called Pinera's comments, quote extremely irresponsible.>> One of the immigrants that we spoke with, Emmanuel Samios, a Haitian man who's been in Chile for a couple of years, has said that the political discourse has had real impact on how he and other immigrants are treated.
00:01:51
Telling them that they are criminals and they should go back home.>> Immigration to Chile has increased but remains proportionally low compared to most developed countries. Still, 75% of Chileans surveyed in a recent poll Said Chile should adopt stricter immigration policies and 45% said immigration was bad for the nation.