"In the current extreme health situation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, member States cannot neglect the terrible plight of refugees in camps and must provide humanitarian assistance to refugees in great need," said Pierre-Alain Fridez (Switzerland, SOC), Chair of the PACE Committee on Migration, Refugees and Displaced Persons.
"UNHCR and IOM have had to suspend the resettlement of refugees from the camps to other countries: this decision seems logical, at a time when countries are closing their borders in order to halt the advance of the pandemic. However, refugees are by definition very vulnerable people who need support, in particular those who find themselves in refugee centres in Europe as well as in Syria, Libya and the Lake Chad basin. They are entitled to have their lives protected,” he said.
“Our countries will overcome the COVID-19 crisis. In order to survive, we must remain humane and supportive, and so we must not forget the weakest in our society," Mr Fridez concluded.