OTTAWA – Three senior federal Liberal ministers including Immigration Minister John McCallum, Health Minister Jane Philpott, Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan visited refugee processing centre that Canada just opened in Jordan in anticipation Syrian refugees coming to Canada.
Ninety people were put through a multi-step process, some under the eye of three federal cabinet ministers who travelled to the Jordanian capital to see firsthand how their plan to bring 25,000 Syrians to Canada by the end of February actually looks.
“We have learned also there is positive things to report in terms of progress,” said Immigration Minister John McCallum as he stood in the cavernous military exhibition facility now being leased to Canada by the Jordanian government.
“The processing centre had its first day of operation today, that will ramp up over time and get more intense. We also heard the good news that exit permits are not an issue in Jordan, so that’s positive.”
McCallum, Philpott and Sajjan flew to Amman late Saturday, spending the day meeting international aid and UN officials and Jordanian leaders on Sunday and then flying straight back to Ottawa.
“I want to thank the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, which has shown great leadership in helping millions of Syrians who have been displaced due to conflict in their home country. Canada recognizes that helping people in need is a shared responsibility, which is why we are working with our partners to resettle 25,000 Syrian refugees safely to Canada as soon as possible.” said Sajjan.
Sajjan also visited Kuwait the following day where he met with Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel currently deployed in the region as part of Canada’s contribution to the multinational Coalition against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). Sajjan used the occasion to pay tribute to the troops, thanking them for their dedication and service.
“It is an honour and privilege to represent Canada on the world stage and to have an opportunity to meet with coalition counterparts and members of the Canadian Armed Forces. I want to express my deep appreciation and heartfelt gratitude to Canadian soldiers, sailors and airmen and airwomen for their hard work, professionalism and dedication.” said Minister Sajjan.