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Red Cross: 200 Refugees 2016 and ’17

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Red Cross: 200 Refugees 2016 and ’17

Syrian refugees on the border of Lebanon, 2014

Syrian refugees. Photo: Páll Stefánsson.

The Icelandic Red Cross doubts more than the 50-60 quota refugees already approved by the government can be accepted this year, RÚV reports. The process, it says, usually takes two to four months. We could, however, receive 200 refugees a year in 2016 and 2017.

This is the view expressed in a statement from the Red Cross in response to a parliamentary resolution from MP Sigríður Ingibjörg Ingadóttir regarding increased support for refugees. The resolution suggest Iceland accept 100 refugees this year, 200 in 2016, and another 200 in 2017.

In the Red Cross’ opinion, the suggested number in the two coming years is manageable, provided that sufficient funds be provided, the refugees be spread between several municipalities and contracts be made to ensure cooperation with those who participate in the project. It points out that Iceland has received proportionally fewer refugees in the past than other Nordic countries.

The Red Cross request that the government no longer send refugees back to Italy and Hungary with reference to the Dublin Regulation. Minister for the Interior Ólöf Nordal has said it’s not safe to send refugees back to Greece, Italy or Hungary.

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