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NZ to Take More Syrian Refugees According to UNHCR

NZ to Take More Syrian Refugees According to UNHCR

Oxfam New Zealand’s Executive Director, Rachael Le Mesurier said: "This is a welcome indication that the government is willing to do more to help some of the millions of increasingly desperate Syrians who have fled for their lives. We hope the government will clarify it’s position as soon as possible, confirm the number of refugees from Syria New Zealand will resettle and by when. If New Zealand is indeed offering to resettle 100 Syrians – this is a welcome first step, but more can be done – more must be done, with urgency.

“The tragic and profoundly inhumane situation faced by refugees across Europe must end. Accepting a paltry 750 people into New Zealand annually while children wash up on the shores of Europe is an absolute affront to the decency and kindness of the New Zealand people. We cannot stand by and watch this crisis unfold while pictures of such incredible suffering flood our screens.

“Offering 100 Syrian refugees sanctuary in New Zealand is a good start, and will change 100 lives. But the New Zealand government must also increase it’s annual refugee quota. We can, and must, offer as many of the desperate and frightened as possible a safe haven.

“The solution to a humanitarian crisis is a humanitarian solution – not building more walls.

“We cannot pretend this is not our responsibility – this challenge has to be taken on by everybody, and we can’t wait for Europe - which has abjectly failed to decide on an appropriate, human rights based response. We know New Zealand is making an effort but that effort must be increased with urgency.”

ENDS

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