U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced on Sunday that the United States will be accepting more refugees in the next two years making it to 100,000 by 2017.
As many refugees have been migrating from Syria and the Middle East throughout this year to European countries, State Secretary Kerry and the German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier agreed that the United States will accept 100,000 refugees over the course of two years, taking by 15,000 at a time.
According to Reuters, at a press conference after his meeting with his German counterpart, John Kerry stated that the United States is ready to help the refugees and said “In consultation with Congress, we will continue to explore ways to increase those figures while maintaining robust security. The need is enormous, but we are determined to answer the call.”
Nearly half of the Syrian population has fled the country because of the four year civil war and U.S. President Barack Obama said that America must help more and that the country will take as many refugees as possible. He announced this prior to the European leaders meeting to talk about the surge of refugees that have flooded the European continent.
According to Reuters, Obama said that there is a need of additional funding from Congress and stated “We are doing what we know we can manage immediately. As soon as we have the opportunity to try to up that we will … welcome more people in these kind of circumstances.” Kerry also talked about funding problems and that America is not able to take more refugees because of post-9/11 screening requirements. He also said that all migrants that would enter the United States would b first referred by the United Nations refugee agency and additionally screened by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
Secretary Kerry has also announced talks during the United Nations General Assembly in New York in order to find a political solution to the war in Syria.
According to Reuters, he said that he would meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and Iran Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to discuss possible outcomes. He stated “We have agreed on certain formats and processes by which we should try and proceed. This will be a very timely meeting in New York and will give us tremendous opportunity to be able to work together and find some ways forward.” He and the German Foreign Minister are to seek support at the Assembly in order to increase the United Nations aid of refugee camps that are set near Syria. Kerry stressed the idea of America being the land of opportunity and second chances and that this tradition will be accompanied with additional funding. However, the global public is still saying that the mass migration needs more attention and a strong policy that will minimize the problem. This move by the Obama administration is to help relieve the pressure on European countries, especially Germany, which is often the destination of the refugees.