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Conservative MEP Vicky Ford makes passionate speech on refugee crisis

Politics / Wed 9th Sep 2015 at 03:02pm

ONE of Britain’s leading MEPs is calling on politicians across Europe to prioritise helping refugees without encouraging people trafficking.

The East of England MEP, Vicky Ford, was responding to EU plans for mandatory quotas, which would force every member state to take a minimum number of refugees. The UK is not part of this.

Mrs Ford said, “No-one chooses to be a refugee and the UK has its own plan to help those being driven out of Syria by the civil war, it focuses, quite correctly, on helping orphaned and vulnerable children. It is a brutal conflict with torture and sexual violence a frighteningly common tool of war.”

“Countries need to work together to help support the refugees fleeing horrific wars but different countries can provide this help in different ways. The UK already provides more aid in Syria than the rest of Europe put together and by offering to resettle the most vulnerable refugees from UN camps it will frustrate the people traffickers who prey on these children.”

Speaking in the European ‘State of the Union’ debate the MEP urged her colleagues to consider the impact on their neighbours when granting asylum and to prioritise thwarting the disgusting trade of people trafficking.

“Granting refugee status does not give a person automatic rights to move across Europe. If a refugee is accepted in Germany then he or she cannot travel to the UK. This must be clear or public confidence in free movement in Europe will be further jeopardised.”

Mrs Ford concluded by urging further economic reforms. “Even at this difficult time, we must not postpone other reforms to build more competitive economies in Europe. Unless countries have a long term economic plan they will not be able to support people in their own countries or those others who need our help.”

Speech

We face an unprecedented humanitarian situation. We must prioritise helping refugees fleeing war, both with immediate needs and to give hope for their long term future.

Different counties can help in different ways. Do not blame the UK, we already provide more aid in Syria than the rest of Europe put together, helping millions of people and acting responsibly by offering to resettle the most vulnerable refugees from UN camps and thus not encouraging people trafficking.

Individual countries should consider the impact on their neighbours when granting asylum.

Granting refugee status does not give a person automatic rights to move across Europe. This must be clear or Public confidence in free movement in Europe will be further jeopardised.

Even at this difficult time, we must not postpone other reforms to build more competitive economies in Europe. Unless countries have a long term economic plan they will not be able to support people in our own countries or those who need our help.

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