News: Congress and the Iraqi Refugee Crisis

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This past Tuesday, the mayor of Södertälje, a city in Sweden, testified before Congress on Sweden’s handling of the Iraqi refugee crisis. The mayor, Anders Lago, spoke with presidential hopeful, Barack Obama, who Anders reports as saying:

“He said word for word that he was ashamed that the United States didn’t take greater responsibility for Iraqi refugees. Then he praised Sweden and Södertälje for how we’ve dealt with the issue.”

Anders also testified that the city of Södertälje, a city of 80,000, has settled more Iraqi refugees than the entire US and Canada combined.

On the same day as Anders testimony, senators Joe Biden and Ed Kennedy sent a proposal to the White House outlining their vision of ameliorating the crisis. Congressional Quarterly reports that the senators seek to establish a coordinator for Iraqi refugee affairs, increase financing of UN refugee operations from approximately 25% to 50%, and increase the pace of US refugee resettlement to meet the 12,000 goal.


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