|For Immediate Release|
|19 March 2008|
|Canada’s response to Iraqi refugee crisis inadequate|
The Canadian Council for Refugees today expressed its disappointment over Canada’s inadequate response to Iraqi refugees, as announced by the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.
“While we welcome the proposed increase in the number of Iraqi refugees resettled to Canada, we are shocked that this increase will be at the expense of refugees from other regions in the world,” said Elizabeth McWeeny, President. “The situation for Iraqi refugees is indeed desperate, as for so many others. The government has not made any new commitment – simply shifted the numbers around. This is hardly something to celebrate.”
The Canadian Council for Refugees issued a call last year for an increased Canadian response to the Iraqi refugee crisis. As part of this call, the CCR urges the government to:
“The Canadian Arab Federation shares the dismay of the Canadian Council for Refugees over this lukewarm response from the government,” said Mohamed Boudjenane, Executive Director, Canadian Arab Federation. “Today’s announcement does not do enough to respond to the concerns of Canadians of Iraqi origin, who are acutely aware of the distress of displaced family members and friends in the Middle East. As well as being victims of a war for which they are not responsible, Iraqis are forced to suffer family separation and long processing delays”.
For the CCR’s call for increased Canadian response to the Iraqi refugee crisis, see http://www.ccrweb.ca/documents/iraqicall.pdf.
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