Published on Tuesday, April 26th, 2016 at 6:52 pm.

Isle of Wight MP welcomes Help for Child Refugees


Andrew Turner, the Island’s MP, has welcomed the Government’s decision to accept 3,000 vulnerable child refugees into the UK who have been displaced by the war in Syria. The Government has announced that they will be working closely with the United Nations Refugee Agency, the UNHCR to identify those children (and, where appropriate, their carers) in most need of being resettled in the UK.
The Island’s MP spoke out after a debate yesterday in the Commons during which an amendment to take in another 3,000 unaccompanied refugee children already in Europe was defeated. The decision does not affect unaccompanied children with family already in the UK, who can apply to to join them under the Dublin convention after making a claim for asylum.
Mr Turner said :
“Our Government has provided more financial support to those fleeing war-torn Syria than all other EU countries put together. We are helping EU countries on the front-line to deal with the immigration crisis and, of course, providing financial support to refugees already in camps in safe European countries. We will never be able to provide homes in the UK for everybody in the world who wants to come here, but we are fulfilling our responsibilities as a relatively rich nation towards those in desperate need elsewhere in the world.
“Thousands of refugees have lost their lives making treacherous sea crossings, having paid people-traffickers to get them into Europe. The Government is committed to reducing the ‘pull-factor’ so that others are not encouraged to make such journeys, putting criminal gangs out of business. The ‘pull-factor is also recognised by the EU, with the Turkey-EU deal returning failed asylum seekers and taking in Syrian refugees still in camps in the region on a one-out, one-in basis.
“We must ask, ‘Should we open our doors to people already in safe EU countries, thus encouraging even more to risk their lives to get here? Or should we work to identify those in most need still living in terrible conditions in some of the most dangerous regions of the world?’ These are very difficult decisions, and I know from my postbag that Islanders have differing views. On balance I believe we should be doing what we can to help those identified as being in the greatest need of help, rather than those who happen to have reached EU shores.”

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