Syrian refugee announcement expected

A Government annoluncement on what more New Zealand may do for Syrian refugees is expected this afternoon after the weekly Cabinet meeting.

Claire Trevett reports at NZ Herald: New hope: Govt to allow more Syrian refugees to come to NZ

The Government will today announce a package allowing hundreds of Syrian refugees to come to New Zealand and agreeing extra financial aid for refugee camps in countries bordering Syria.

It is understood the Cabinet will sign off on a special intake of Syrian refugees on top of the 750 refugees New Zealand takes under its total annual quota.

The final number of Syrians to be offered places in New Zealand under the extraordinary allocation was yet to be finalised last night. But a senior Government source said it was expected to be in the hundreds rather than thousands and could be spread out over up to three years.

Once the details had been worked through with the UN’s refugee agency, the first could arrive within months.

Whatever decision is made will have taken less than a week,quitev rapid by Government standards. While media have short news cycles and alomg with opposition MPs demand instant action serious issues require serious consideration.

However, there would be no immediate steps to increase the overall refugee quota permanently – such a decision would come after next year’s review.

That makes sense. If a one off increase in refugees is going to happen anyway that takes the pressure off a decision on the annual number of refugees we take.

New Zealand takes about 750 refugees from the UN’s refugee agency. There have been special intakes in the past but most have been within annual quotas, including the Tampa refugees from Afghanistan in 2001 and provision for 100 places for Syrians last year.

Since the conflict in Syria began in 2011, New Zealand has taken about 120 Syrians who arrived as part of the quota, under family reunification policies or as asylum seekers.

As more countries in Europe began to join Austria and Germany in taking refugees, Mr Key has been under growing pressure to do the same.

There is a particular problem with Syrian refugees that is deserving of some Government action but consideration also has to be given to the world’s overall refugee situation. While there are four or five million Syrian refugees, mostly in Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey but now spilling out more into Europe, there’s reported to be ten times this number of refugees wanting to be resettled.

UPDATE: John Key has just spoken about this on Breakfast.

Over and above the 750 there will be a special emergency allocation of additional Syrian refugees. It will be ‘hundreds’. We have to be able to cope with the increased number.

And the Government will put more money into Syrian refugee agencies in the Middle East. Key points out that most refugees want to return to their homes in Syria so need to be supported in refugee camps until that is possible.

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21 Comments

  1. False Flag

     /  7th September 2015

    “We have 50 million Muslims in Europe. There are signs that Allah will grant Islam victory in Europe, without swords, without guns, without conquest – will turn it into a Muslim continent within a few decades”

    (Muammar Qaddafi)

    Reply
    • False flag is an appropriate pseudonym. I presume you’re aware how many centuries Muslims have been in Europe..And Christians have been in the Middle East.

      Reply
      • Mike C

         /  7th September 2015

        @George

        Based on a lot of the video footage I have seen over the past week or so, it does look like a huge mass-Muslim invasion of Europe.

        It’s almost like it is a case of:- “If we can’t beat the Westerners … then let’s join ’em”. LOL.

        Reply
        • How many of them are Muslim?

          Reply
          • Mike C

             /  7th September 2015

            @George

            I don’t know … I haven’t had the chance to count them all yet. LOL.

            But seriously, I imagine that the larger proportion of the people who are trying to get to the Austrian Border lately are probably Muslim, judging by the way the women are dressed 🙂

            Reply
      • Pete this is disingenuous. Western European countries have had very small or no Muslim populations until very recently.

        Germany imported masses from Turkey to provide cheap labour during their economic miracle boom, England has allow masses in from Bangladesh and Pakistan. France has allowed in masses from its ex colonies.

        Prior to 1950 Islam was very much a tiny part of the Western Democracies. Now it is a significant minority – and in places is calling for its customs to take precedence over host country traditions which our European ancestors shed a lot of blood to arrive at. Things like one man one vote, like a division between church and state, like equality of the sexes, like freedom of speech and association, like freedom to be who you are regardless of colour or sexual preference.

        Allowing every more people in to the West when their religio-political philosophy is diametrically opposed to Western values seems just a wee bit stupid.

        The West, particularly in Europe, is reaping seeds of future strife. i fear for my relatives in Europe – what i saw in 1999 and then again in 2015 make me think that a wave of civil unrest is building. And that wave is being ignored by professional politicians for some unknown reason. Innocents will apy the price, not the elites of political systems nor the leading lights of Muslim fundamentalist organisations in Europe.

        if you think its all Hunky Dorey…. go google Anjem Choudry and listen to what he wants for Britain and how he thinks of non Muslim Britons

        Reply
  2. kiwi guy

     /  7th September 2015

    Reply
  3. kiwi guy

     /  7th September 2015

    WELCOME TO LONDON!

    Reply
  4. kiwi guy

     /  7th September 2015

    WELCOME TO ROME

    Reply
  5. kiwi guy

     /  7th September 2015

    Reply
  6. We must not be naive about the possible use of Muslim immigrants being deliberately placed as part of the grand plan for the Islamisation of Europe. Historical records show why this is so. The need for greater resources for the Police Intelligence, NZSIS and GCSB to maintain a watching brief over the migrants is clear. It is a pertinent question that because these migrants from Syria are at least 64% Sunni Muslim, why have they not been given asylum in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Russia, China, the UAE? They are supposedly fleeing a civil war, and should then only be given succour until they are able to go back home, where they belong. They do not belong in New Zealand.

    Reply
  7. It all depends on your narration, I have been following the Arab spring since the get go, Syria was a powder keg waiting to blow after 40+ years ruled by one family.

    They are not running to Europe to implement Shariah law, but running FROM it….
    And to save their next generation

    Reply
    • They aren’t running from Islam. They are running from violence. They will be bringing Islam with them into Europe.

      Reply
      • Islam and Sharia are 2 different things, (though closely related) Sharia is violence codified. 4 years of civil war has taken its toll, but the explosion of violence under Islamic state is the last straw driving many who were displaced within Syria to leave the country. The Kurdi family made famous by the photo are an example, they first moved to Aleppo, then to Kobane, Once ISIS showed up they fled to Turkey.

        Reply
        • artcroft

           /  7th September 2015

          True. But they still take the beliefs and preferences of Islam with them to Europe and over time this will change the political and social structure of Europe. I believe Islam will have a more profound impact on the values of Europe than the values of Europe will have on Islam. And before anyone asks me to reference that to research or evidence – its a personal opinion based on anecdote. In any case mass immigration is a big deal and should be divorced from sentiment if its to be successful.

          Reply
          • You got me there, I’m not a fan of any religion, it will take intensive intervention to assimilate/integrate the (almost entirely grateful) refugees properly. Fortunately Syria’s strain of Islam has been towards the secular end of the spectrum by design, as the Assad family being minority Shiite in a Sunni dominant country have suppressed the excesses of Islam to save their own skins over 40+ years.
            A Syrian family is far less likely to have been radicalized as those from Afghanistan, which has experienced non stop conflict since the early 80s and think of the Taliban as “the good old days”

            Reply
            • kiwi guy

               /  7th September 2015

              Assad is a product of Arab modernisation and secularisation gone wrong. Back in the day the Ba’ath movement which orginated in Syria sought to modernise the Arab old world of tribes into something more like Western secular states with accompany infrastructure. Education was understood as central to this – that’s why Syrians and Iraqis have high levels of education, and the ones who can afford it get an education in the US in Engineering fields etc.

              Hussein was another product of the Ba’ath movement. He was a brutal dictator but ran a very modern state with extremely high levels of education till he pissed off the Americans.

  8. Mike C

     /  7th September 2015

    Three words spring to mind:-

    “TOWER OF BABEL” 🙂

    Reply
  9. Havesome morepork

     /  7th September 2015

    Not interested in getting into the Muslim debate but I couldnt help but notice several homeless vagrants sleeping on the street in central auckland last night when I was on my way back to my hotel.

    I see several thousand people have signed a Facebook post and offered up their homes to take in refugees.

    If NZers as a people are so giving then why were the homeless still out on the streets last night?

    Reply
  10. The refugee Syrian situation in Europe is undoubtedly hard to fathom from the far shores of NZ. The images of thousands of refugees stranded in Budapest waiting for entrance to the EEC is hard to watch, their agonising faces tell a gruelling story. The news article by NZ daily mail, about Abdullah Kurdi who couldn’t save his wife and two small boys from the terrifying wave on their small vessel that took their lives is extremely touching. I’m sure there are many more of these stories which the media cannot cover. I definitely have empathy for these refugees but in reality how will they fit into the NZ lifestyle? While I do agree with John Key’s humane point of view of increasing the NZ quota from 750 refugees a year, I believe this is not logical. In reality, how much difference will this really make to the millions seeking asylum? These refugees should be taken in, but at the same time should adapt to the New Zealand lifestyle, instead of these refugees clinging together in their own tight knit community.

    These refugees should be able to integrate perfectly well, respect NZ values, don’t abuse welfare, and greatly enrich NZ. It’s too easy to be “humane” at someone else’s expense. Not too many want to use their personal income and be personally responsible for refugees. Yet many think “New Zealanders should do it”? I believe no more refugees!! And if someone is so humane, they can bring some to live in their house, pay for everything, and enjoy the results of this “multicultural enrichment” in their own house.

    Do you think our government can afford it? There are already 622,000 people in New Zealand living in poverty and we do not need anymore to contribute to our taxes. I believe money should be spent instead on helping to upgrade the kiwi’s living in New Zealand, instead of letting new refugees in.

    Reply

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