Canada’s immigration piled 7,500 Syrian refugee application

Canada’s refugee department pile estimated at 7,500 applications, following toddler Alan Kurdi’s dead body washing up on Turkish beach in September

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Updated Oct 13, 2015

Almost 2,000 refugees were recognized by the United Nations as the most exposed among others and their applications were deferred for weeks.

There is no explanation over why there were so many uncompleted papers or how many applications have not been processed. Some people think that this may depend on the government being eager to give primacy to some Syrian refugees.

According to an alleged CTV report, Conservatives have already prioritized some groups in Canada expecting them to vote for the party. The report also asserted that the prime minister's office compelled Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to expel Sunni and Shia Muslims.

Sunni Muslims consist of  about three-quarters of all Syrians, while other Muslim groups such as Shias, Alawis and Ismailis make up an estimated 16 percent of the population. The remainder of the population belongs to the Christian and Jewish faith.

Conservative Leader Stephen Harper defended the significance of religious minorities, saying that these groups “are in fact being targeted by ISIS and its allies for extermination.”

“That includes Muslim minorities as well, and other groups,” Harper said. “But in the end, as we’ve been very clear, we don’t make the decisions on refugee selection. They’re not made by political people. Those decisions are made by arms-length bureaucrats under the policy.” he added.

The prime minister’s office commanded to suspend the procedure of Syrian refugees files related to Canada by the UN High Commission for Refugees over the reassessment period, but it is not certain when it was completed and what changes were made in the process.

More than 1,850 files that were referred to Canada by the UNCHR have been waiting to be handled, since the beginning of September along with an estimated 5,500 files from private sponsors - private sponsorships carry out different procedures.

According to refugee advocates who previously criticised the government for having halted the processing of UN-referred Syrian files for the reassessment said that many defenseless refugees are waiting in line caused trouble and this showed that Canada could have done more than this.

“It is a very big number, and should have been processed and could have been processed had the resources been in place and had there been political will to process them,” said Naomi Alboim, a former head of the federal government’s refugee resettlement program.

TRTWorld and agencies