Canadian Prime minister, Justin Trudeau and members of the Cabinet welcomed the first plane of Syrian refugees on Thursday. 163 Syrian refugees were warmly welcomed at Toronto airport.
Canada will receive 10,000 Syrian refugees by the end of this month and at least 25,000 before March.
Canada’s solidarity with the refugees is contrast with the neighboring country,US where right wing parties and conservatives are calling for the ban of refugees. Trudeau’s plan of accepting Syrians are backed by the main opposition parties and also got a wide spread public support.
The Syrians arrived in the Canadians are mostly sponsored by individual Canadians and small groups. 28,000 Canadian dollar is raised for each refugee family. Another plane of refugees is expected to arrive on Saturday.
Apart from the usual immigration and health screenings, Syrian refugees were also given public health insurance cards and social insurance numbers. Syrins were even gifted with winter clothes and children got toys.
The previous conservative government, led by Stephen Harper had tightened the rules for refugees settlement. But, Trudeau government’s epic decision has regained the Canadian legacy which welcomed Kosovans, Ugandans and Vietnamese at the time of their refugee crisis.
“This is something that we are able to do in this country because we define a Canadian not by a skin color or a language or a religion or a background,” Canadian Prime Minister said to the reporters of New york Times, “but by a shared set of values, aspirations, hopes and dreams that not just Canadians but people around the world share” he added.
The previous government’s policy was largely criticized after the death of Aylan kurdi, a 3 year old Syrian boy, in the shores of Turkey while his family is planning to escape to Canada.