World Vision Calls for UK to Open Safe Routes for Child Refugees
World Vision is hugely encouraged by the Pope’s visit to the Moria detention camp in Lesbos on Saturday. The pontiff and Greek orthodox leaders are sending out a clear message that a compassionate solution to the largest refugee crisis Europe has witnessed must be found. The UK needs to accept its moral responsibility to offer a safe haven to the world's poorest and most vulnerable - men, women and children who have been made homeless by war, violence and disasters.
The Pope plans to meet 150 children, some of whom are orphaned and alone. World Vision shares the Pope’s belief that vulnerable children must be put first in arrangements to manage the current crisis. We must provide a safe haven for children fleeing violence - their suffering is unimaginable.
An estimated 10,000 refugee children have disappeared in Europe and many have fallen into the hands of people-smugglers. Under international law, Europe must give refugee children the same protection as its own children.
Tim Pilkington, World Vision UK's CEO, says: “The Pope and other religious leaders have demonstrated great humanity and leadership in meeting refugees in Lesbos. I strongly urge David Cameron to show compassion and create a safe UK haven for children who have lost everything.”
A joint report released this week by World Vision and 12 other aid and refugee agencies criticises the inadequate response to the refugee crisis by the UK and other European governments. The report A Safe Haven? calls on the UK to take its fair share of refugees as part of a co-ordinated global response to the crisis. The report highlights the need to expand safe and legal routes for refugees and improve reception and en route conditions. It underlines the importance of fair and human asylum procedures as well as tackling the causes which cause millions of people to leave their homes.
World Vision works with displaced Syrian Refugees in Serbia, Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Syria.