The UK is set to take thousands more vulnerable child refugees from Syria over the next four years, the Home Office has announced.
The Government said up to 3,000 children who are considered ‘at risk’ at camps in the Middle East will resettle in Britain by 2020. This is in addition to the 20,000 refugees David Cameron has already agreed to give homes in the UK.The children, from refugee camps in the war torn-Syria region, have been identified as being at risk of “child labour, child marriage or other forms of neglect, abuse or exploitation”. All of the children will be brought to Britain by 2020 under the scheme which the Government claims is the “largest resettlement programme in the world” for children from the Middle East and north Africa. Britain will also send 75 border officials to help process migrants arriving in Greece by assessing their claims.
Immigration Minister, James Brokenshire, said: “We have always been clear that the vast majority of vulnerable children are better off remaining in host countries in the region so they can be reunited with surviving family members. However, there are exceptional circumstances in which it is in a child’s best interests to be resettled in the UK. We have engaged with a number of NGOs, including the UNHCR on the best way to provide protection to refugee children and ensure their welfare and safety remain at the heart of every decision made.”