The EU’s efforts to resolve the refugee issue unless it reverses its fragmented approach, UN high commissioner for refugees António Guterres said in a statement issued today. Noting that Europe is facing a moment of truth, he said “this is the time to reaffirm the values upon which it was built.”
While underlining the exemplary political and moral leadership from a number of European countries, Guterres said “overall, Europe has failed to find an effective common response, and people have suffered as a result.”
Describing it as a crisis, Guterres noted that more than 300,000 people have risked their lives to cross the Mediterranean Sea this year and “over 2,600 didn’t survive the dangerous crossing.”
“The situation requires a massive common effort that is not possible with the current fragmented approach. Europe is facing its biggest refugee influx in decades,” the UNHCR chief said.
“The only way to solve this problem is for the Union and all member states to implement a common strategy, based on responsibility, solidarity and trust,” he said.
Vice president Nagham al-Ghadiri appeals to the peoples of the world to help the Syrian people, and to put pressure on decision-makers to facilitate the crossing of Syrian refugees and provide them with a safe temporary shelters.
“The photo of Aylan, the Syrian child whose body washed up on one of Turkey’s shores, is a stark evidence of the severity of the suffering Syrians children go through as a result of the Assad regime’s terrorism. Barrel bombs and poison gas forces them and their families to take a perilous journey by sea.”
“The Syrian people have always been hospitable as they hosted refugees from all the countries of the region, including Palestinians, Iraqis and Lebanese, without having to build one tent but shared with them food and housing.”
Ghadiri also said that “we appeal to the peoples of neighboring countries and other host countries to help Syrian refugees,” calling for finding an urgent and immediate solution to stop the ongoing killing and achieve the Syrian people’s demands for freedom and dignity.” (Source: Syrian Coalition)