“But if those numbers increase significantly, then we’ll see our share”.
Some, like the now infamous photograph of Syrian man Laith Majid in tears clutching his two children just off the Greek Island of Kos, have ended happily. The photo of three-year-old Aylan Kurdi lifeless on a beach in Turkey was haunting.
Syrians are a majority of the asylum seekers who are trying to flee a civil war that has claimed more than 250,000 lives since 2011, and resulted in one of the largest refugee exoduses since the Second World War.
Incomprehensible levels of violence continue with all sides showing callous disregard for human lives or basic dignity. As Iowa’s Republican governor in the 1970s, he got special State Department permission to resettle the entire population of 1,400 Vietnamese Tai Dam seeking refugee status.
As American pray for refugees and their safe passage in Europe, the country, and especially people of faith and conscience; must also look at our own borders.
However, just because boats are not washing up on USA shores does not absolve this country of its moral responsibility to Syrian families.
A coalition of US nongovernmental organizations on Friday urged President Barack Obama to do more to address the “spiraling refugee crisis in the Middle East“, specifically calling on the United States to resettle 100,000 Syrians fleeing a civil war now in its fifth year.
Although presidential candidates are quick to criticize, now is an appropriate time to do it. O’Malley’s statement came right after the Obama administration announced a plan to help settle an underwhelming percentage Syrian refugees.
Most are living in neighboring countries, particularly Turkey and Lebanon.
At the same time, millions more are still suffering inside of Syria. They have done what they can with the means available to them. They already made the decision to move from one country to another. But we need a broader-based worldwide coalition to support education on a multi-year basis, so we can plan and deliver what is needed. “We should also immediately mobilize billions of euros for Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey”.
For this reason, we strongly believe that aid budgets should not be used to fund the refugee crisis in Europe, but rather to support those countries shouldering the burden and inside Syria itself.
Obviously, we have to be clear that this is not only a refugee issue.
There is capacity and resources within Europe to handle the current caseload. In another generous first-world country, Norway, the government estimates that it costs $125,000 to support each refugee.
However, the solution is bigger than giving Syrians refuge and delivering humanitarian relief.
The Dutch foreign minister arrived in Beirut Monday to discuss the refugee crisis facing Europe and the Middle East with his Lebanese counterpart, ahead of a summit on the subject this week. By September, the number had reached almost 200 on some days, said Andrew Harper, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees’ representative to Jordan.
The senators said that while the vetting process can take between 18 and 24 months – requiring the involvement of a handful of agencies including the DHS, the FBI and the Pentagon – the various background checks and investigations “should absolutely not be cut short in an effort to try and accommodate more refugees than the process can safely handle”.
The US government must stop locking in detention centers refugees and asylees arriving daily at the U.S.-Mexico border.