Canada raises capacity to accommodate refugees to 50,000 by 2016

By @pathakmishra on
Canada's Immigration Minister John McCallum speaks during a news conference in Ottawa, Canada November 24, 2015.
Canada's Immigration Minister John McCallum speaks during a news conference in Ottawa, Canada November 24, 2015. Reuters/Chris Wattie

Canadian Immigration and Citizenship Minister John McCallum has declared that the nation would allow around 50,000 Syrian refugees to resettle in 2016, which accounts to just double the number of refugees allowed in 2015.

The minister was in Amman, capital of Jordan, on Sunday where he met Syrian families ready to board the flights to Canada. He told one of the families that “everyone in Canada is waiting to meet you.”

The new liberal authority of the nation has decided to accommodate 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of February. McCallum said that the government was hoping to resettle around 35,000 to 50,000 Syrian refugees by the end of 2016 in collaboration with the United Nations refugee agency, the Jordanian government and the International Organisation for Migration helping with the vetting process.

During his two-day tour to Jordan, the minister visited several development projects as well as refugee centres. He already told his provincial counterparts earlier that the nation has firm plans to bring in more refugees in 2016.

To ensure boarding of Canadian citizens, McCallum has taken help from the social media platform and launched the hashtag #WelcomeRefugees. A Canadian research firm reported that Canadians have shown a positive response on welcoming refugees to the nation. Around 70 percent of comments indicate support for increasing influx of refugees, which shows support for the government’s decision at the same time.

Until Dec. 22, around 2,051 applications for refugees to resettle in Canada have been finalised. Out of which, only 1,186 have reached the destination. The number, however, is supposed to increase to 25,000 by the end of February next year.

Advocates have also opined when Canada is thinking so much for refugees from Syria, it should also take positive actions relating to those fleeing from other countries out of conflict or other valid reasons. "We're hoping that people who are now responding to Syrian refugees … might also take a moment to think about refugees from other regions of the world," Canadian Council of Refugees Executive Director Janet Dench told CTV's Canada AM on Monday.

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