Boris urged to help wel­come refugees

MP called on to en­cour­age coun­cil in­volve­ment

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS - By Alexan­der Ballinger

THE MP for Uxbridge and South Ruis­lip Boris John­son has been urged to en­cour­age Hilling­don Coun­cil to wel­come Syr­ian refugees es­cap­ing con­flict to the area.

Mr John­son was among the min­is­ters told to help tackle the ‘lam­en­ta­ble’ Euro­pean mi­grant cri­sis by the Com­mons Home Af­fairs Com­mit­tee.

The gov­ern­ment has com­mit­ted to bring 20,000 Syr­ian refugees flee­ing war and ISIS ex­trem­ists into the coun­try by 2020.

But in a re­port pub­lished on Au­gust 3 the Home Af­fairs Com­mit­tee found that no refugees have been re­homed in the con­stituency of top min­is­ters, in­clud­ing Boris John­son’s Uxbridge con­stituency and Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May’s Maiden­head con­stituency.

Chair of the com­mit­tee and Labour MP for Le­ices­ter East, Keith Vaz, said: “Europe’s ef­forts to ad­dress this ‘colos­sal’ refugee cri­sis has been lam­en­ta­ble.

“The atro­cious con­di­tions in mi­grant camps within and on the bor­ders of the rich­est coun­tries on earth is a source of shame.

“Cab­i­net min­is­ters should show lead­er­ship in en­cour­ag­ing their own lo­cal au­thor­i­ties to take their fair share of Syr­ian refugees. We need to avoid silently en­cour­ag­ing a two-tier sys­tem.”

Ac­cord­ing to the com­mit­tee, an es­ti­mated 227,316 en­tered Europe in 2016 up to the start of July and 2,920 deaths were recorded in this same pe­riod.

Coven­try in the West Mid­lands has ac­cepted 105 refugees, while Gateshead near New­cas­tle has ac­cepted 62.

Last year, Kens­ing­ton and Chelsea Coun­cil agreed to let in 50 Syr­ian refugees.

In con­trast Hilling­don Coun­cil in Boris John­son’s con­stituency has re-homed no Syr­ian refugees.

The re­port also found that no refugees have been wel­comed in Min­is­ters’ con­stituen­cies of any of the ‘great of­fices of state’ – Prime Min­is­ter, Chan­cel­lor, Home Sec­re­tary and For­eign Sec­re­tary.

Boris John­son’s of­fice and Hilling­don Coun­cil have been con­tacted for com­ment.

n URGED TO HELP: Uxbridge and South Ruis­lip MP Boris John­son is be­ing called on to get Hilling­don Coun­cil to ac­cept Syr­ian refugees into the bor­ough

n NEED FOR HELP: More Syr­i­ans are flee­ing their con­flict-hit home and hop­ing to come to Europe

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