Dickson tables motion calling for UK Government to accept more refugees

Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson has tabled a motion calling for the UK to accept a sizable number of refugees in the wake of the migrant crisis facing Europe.

The East Antrim MLA made the move as outcry grew over the death of a young Syrian boy on a Turkish beach. A picture of the dead toddler, named as three-year-old Aylan Kurdi, was circulated widely online.

The issue has also been submitted by Alliance as a matter of the day, ensuring it may be debated in the Assembly on Monday (September 7), as well as a full debate in future.

Mr Dickson said it was essential the UK offered resettlement places to help alleviate the crisis.

“Anyone looking at the pictures emerging cannot fail to be horrified at the suffering people are going through, a suffering so great that they risk their lives trying to escape it. The human cost has been evidenced by the heart-breaking picture of this young boy lying dead.

“More can and should be done to help. We have nothing less than a moral obligation to do so. Here in Northern Ireland, we can ensure provisions are in place to take in as many people as we can.

“The British Government should be taking a leadership role in this crisis by devoting an appropriate amount of resources to help and taking a sizable number of refugees in, in line with other EU nations. The Government has played an active role in similar situations in the past and this should be no different.

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