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Catalonia is ready to host refugees

A number of different associations met this Wednesday with current Catalan President, Artur Mas, and current Catalan Minister for Social Affairs, Neus Munté, to coordinate on the hosting of refugees. "Catalonia is ready" stated Munté, although she admitted that the Spanish Government haven't told them yet "the number of refugees nor the approximate date of their arrival". In any case, the Catalan institutions and collaborative organisations will be able to host initially between 2,000 and 5,000 people. "These people are living a daily 'Paris'" stated Munté, referring to the refugees escaping military conflicts. She also emphasised that the terrorist attacks in Paris "haven't changed" the government plans in terms of hosting refugees "on the contrary, they have made us more aware of how important it is to work together". 

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18 November 2015 06:44 PM

by

ACN / Sara Prim

Barcelona (CNA).- Catalonia will be able to host between 2,000 and 5,000 refugees, considering the institutions and collaborating institutions' size and capability. "Catalonia is ready" stated current Catalan Minister for Social Affairs, Neus Munté this Wednesday after a meeting with current Catalan President Artur Mas and several different associations to coordinate on the hosting of refugees. Munté admitted that the Spanish Government haven't told them yet "the number of refugees nor the approximate date of their arrival" but that "they will arrive and they will do so in a slow, progressive way". "These people are living a daily 'Paris'" stated Munté, referring to the refugees escaping military conflicts, "it is very important to distinguish between criminal terrorists and refugees who are escaping the horrors of war". "The terrorist attacks in Paris haven't changed the government's plans" in terms of hosting refugees "on the contrary, they have made us more aware of how important it is to work together" she concluded. 


A coordinated wave of solidarity

The meeting demonstrated the institutions and organisations' "wave of solidarity" and was a way of checking the state of the situation and the level of coordination between those agents involved. General Director for Immigration Xavier Bosch and Refugee Hosting Committee head Àngel Miret also attended the meeting. Joining them were representatives from the organisations which will deal with the refugees on their arrival, the Red Cross, the Catalan Committee to Help Refugees (CCAR) and the Spanish Catholic Commission Association for Migration. The Catholic charity for social inclusion, Caritas, and Sant Joan de Déu hospital, which will provide facilities and equipment, also attended the meeting.

Calendar and number of refugees still to be confirmed

Munté admitted that the Spanish Government haven’t informed them yet about the "expected calendar" nor the "number of refugees" expected to arrive in Spain. "Probably because they still don't know it" she added. "What is important is to make clear is that we are ready to host them" she stated and gave an indicative number of between 2,000 and 5,000 refugees, considering the institutions and collaborating institutions' size and capability. "It is sure that they are going to arrive, and it is going to be a slow, progressive arrival" assured Munté who asked the organisations to be "patient".

The terrorist attacks in Paris haven't changed the planning

Regarding possible changes in the government's policy to host refugees after the ISIS terrorist attacks in Paris, Munté highlighted that "these people are living a daily 'Paris'". "These terrorist attacks haven't change our planning, on the contrary, they have made us even more aware of how important it is to work together". "It is very important to distinguish between criminal terrorists and refugees who are escaping the horrors of war" she stated "we have to be very careful with these messages" she concluded. 

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  • Image of the meeting between institutions and organisations to coordinate on refugees arrival (by ACN)

  • Image of the meeting between institutions and organisations to coordinate on refugees arrival (by ACN)