New Brunswick

U.N. refugee commission thanks New Brunswickers for funds

The United Nations high commissioner for refugees is thanking the governments and the people of New Brunswick for their "unprecedented" financial contributions for Syrian refugees.

United Nations high commissioner says contributions to Syrian refugee crisis are 'unprecedented'

The UN refugee commission thanked the premiers of New Brunswick, Ontario and the Northwest Territories for their contributions to help Syrian refugees. (Lefteris Pitarakis/Associated Press)

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is thanking the governments and the people of New Brunswick for their "unprecedented" financial contributions for Syrian refugees.

Furio De Angelis, an UNHCR representative, said the donations from New Brunswick, Ontario and the Northwest Territories will make a big difference.

"These generous donations... will increase our ability to urgently respond to the growing needs of Syrian refugees," De Angelis said in a statement Wednesday.

"This is indeed another demonstration of Canada's dedication to help and assist the world's refugees and displaced people."

Premier Brian Gallant announced a contribution by the provincial government earlier in September of $50,000, while the Northwest Territories have donated $25,000 and the government of Ontario contributed $1 million to support Syrian refugees.

The commission says it also welcomes additional promises from ​the premiers to ensure support is provided to refugees after they arrive in their respective jurisdictions.

"UNHCR is sincerely grateful to all Canadians across the country who are mobilizing and working with their respective municipal and provincial authorities as well as the federal government to lay groundwork for the resettlement of Syrian refugees and to raise funding in support of emergency operations," the statement said. 

The commission says it will continue to advocate for the resettlement of Syrians around the world and to appeal for financial support.

"The deterioration of conditions inside Syria and neighbouring countries is driving thousands of Syrians to risk everything on perilous journeys to Europe," the statement said.

UNHCR says as of Sept. 6 there were 4,088,099 registered Syrian refugees registered in surrounding countries and only 12 per cent of them live in formal refugee camps.

It estimates 7.6 million people have been displaced inside Syria.

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