Thursday, July 06, 2017

Welcomed - ‘Whatever Their Nationality’

STAR (Student Action for Refugees) has welcomed as “very good news” a Government decision to expand the Syrian Vulnerable Person Resettlement Scheme.

image

The Home Secretary announced (Monday 3 July) that vulnerable refugees of any nationality – not just Syrian – who fled the conflict to neighbouring countries and are unable to safely return to their home country could now be resettled in the UK.

Two years ago the government committed to resettle 20,000 Syrian refugees from the Middle East and North Africa Region (MENA) by 2020 and more than 7,000 Syrians have already arrived in the UK through the scheme.

The policy change follows advice from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees who said that a diversified resettlement scheme was required to address the needs of the refugee population in the region.

This means that other groups such as Iraqi, Palestinian and Kurdish minorities who sought refuge in Syria before the conflict but have had to flee again can now be helped.

Importantly mixed nationality family groups will now also become eligible for resettlement.

Announcing the move Amber Rudd said: “It is vitally important that we focus our support on the most vulnerable refugees in the region who have fled the atrocities in Syria, whatever their nationality.

“We will continue to work with local authorities and the UNHCR, whose hard work so far has made sure that the scheme is a success.”

Emma Williams – STAR’s Chief Executive – added: “There’s no doubt that this action taken by the government is to be welcomed.

“It’s very good news as it will make a huge difference to those coming to our country as refugees fleeing the terrible conflict in Syria.

“We favour safe and legal routes for people coming here.

“Expanding the Vulnerable Person Resettlement Scheme will have that direct benefit and in due course help Syrians and those of other nationalities fleeing that country to achieve and to thrive here.”

Posted by STAR team on 06/07/2017 at 12:18 PM