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Sinn Féin call on Belfast City Council to help address refugee crisis

3 September, 2015 - by Jim McVeigh


Sinn Féin Belfast City Councillor and group leader Jim McVeagh has called on the Mayor Belfast, Arder Carson, to convene an emergency sitting of Belfast City Council to seek to address what Belfast can do to address the refugee and humanitarian crisis unfolding across the Middle East and Europe.

Speaking today Cllr McVeigh said:

“Sinn Féin have petitioned the Lord Mayor, Arder Carson, to convene an emergency sitting of council to address the increasingly urgent need to deal with the refugee and humanitarian crisis unfolding across Europe and the Middle East.

“He has agreed to do so.

“This crisis across the Middle East and in Europe has rightly been a focus in recent media.

“Images of infants being washed up on shore after fleeing, with their families, conflicts in Syria, Libya, Iraq and Kurdistan, have been extremely distressing.

“No father or mother would choose lightly to make such a perilous journey for their families without just cause.

“Indeed my party colleague and MEP Martina Anderson has heard first hand testimonies of those fleeing these conflicts and sadly witnessed the makeshift morgues for those who could not be rescued when she visited the centers in Lampadusa in Italy.

“We cannot stand by idly and let this humanitarian crisis to unfold further without doing something.   

“As an elected representative in Belfast I believe we can do more. We must examine all options open to us with proactive and practical ideas and as such I have submitted this motion to allow for the space to debate this.”

The Sinn Féin motion reads:

This council abhors the terrible humanitarian and refugee crisis and the terrible deaths resulting from the crisis unfolding across Europe

This council wishes to discuss how we and the citizens of Belfast might respond to this crisis and offer practical assistance to families fleeing the conflicts in Syria, Libya, Iraq ad Kurdistan.

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