The Jesuit Refugee Service wants the government to set up a comprehensive resettlement programme here for refugees from Syria. There are only 35 Syrian refugees in Ireland at present. David Moriarty, Policy and Advocacy Officer with JRS Ireland told Richard Crowley of RTE’s News at One that we need to radically increase that number and provide adequate services for them. He said they needed educational and health care facilities, as well as places where they could be taught English. Listen here to an interview David Moriarty also gave to Soulwaves, which syndicates to local radio in Ireland.
Government urged to resettle Syrian refugees in Ireland
JRS speak out on World day of Migrants and Refugees
The Jesuit Refugee Service has called on the Irish Government to set up a comprehensive resettlement programme for Syrian refugees in Ireland.
Speaking before the World Day of Migrants and Refugees (Sunday Jan 19) Eugene Quinn, JRS Ireland’s National Director, welcomed the pledge by the Government this week of additional aid for Syria and said it could be put to good use by bringing Syrian refugee families here until peace is restored in their war-torn country.
“Syria is now recognized as the worst refugee crisis in 20 years. In a spirit of solidarity with the country’s suffering, Ireland can offer shelter and hope through a resettlement programme for Syrian refugees in Ireland. We did this very successfully in the past for Vietnamese refugees and European refugees from the Balkan conflict. There is a desperate need to help the people of Syria and its neighbouring countries who are stretched beyond capacity in helping those fleeing the catastrophic situation there.”
JRS IReland is part of the Jesuit outreach worldwide to refugees. There are JRS groups working in Syria and Lebanon with refugees who are experiencing the trauma of war. JRS Ireland is in contact with these groups and Irish members have gone to work in the countries. According to David Moriarty Policy and Advocacy Officer with JRS Ireland, they would be of great help in establishing a resettlement programme in Ireland.
Quoting Pope Francis’ message for the World Day of Migrants and Refugees, Quinn said “We are challenged by the Pope ‘to create a better world where migrants and refugees are not pawns on the chessboard of humanity .
The Pope urges us all to challenge ‘the globalisation of indifference’ and respond to the needs of the children, women and men who are forced to leave their homes ‘fleeing from situations of extreme poverty or persecution in the hope of a better future’, continued Quinn, “ and in Ireland, Europe and across the world, millions of migrants and refugees, facing life and death situations, cross borders seeking refuge and a better life. We’ve established resettlement programmes for refugees before and we can do the same for those fleeing Syria and play a small part in challenging that ‘globalisation of indifference.”[Notes]
For further comment, please contact Eugene Quinn (National Director, JRS Ireland) at 086-8214888 or David Moriarty (Policy and Advocacy Office, JRS Ireland) at 086-6028533
The Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) Ireland mission is to accompany, to advocate and to serve the cause of asylum seekers, refugees and forcibly displaced migrants in Ireland. On a regular basis JRS staff members visit nine direct provision centres located in Dublin, Kildare, Laois and Limerick. Further information on JRS, available at www.jrs.ie
Further information on the activities of JRS in Syria is available on the JRS Ireland website
Read the full text of the Pope’s Message on World Day of Migrants and Refugees, Sunday 19 January 2014