US to accept more refugees

US Secretary of State John Kerry says US will accept 85,000 more refugees from around the world this year

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

US Secretary of State John Kerry

During a news conference on Sunday with German foreign minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, US Secretary of State John Kerry announced that the US will increase the number of refugees it hosts to 85,000, up from 70,000.

US officials has said refugees will be mostly Syrian and the others will come from war-torn African countries.

Kerry did not say precisely how many of the additional refugees would be from Syria, however he said that the US is ready to help.

"In consultation with Congress, we will continue to explore ways to increase those figures while maintaining robust security," Kerry told in a news conference after meeting with Steinmeier.

"The need is enormous, but we are determined to answer the call," he added.

Kerry's annoucement came after warnings from US Republicans that some of the refugees could pose a potential terrorism threat.

Congressman Bob Goodlatte and Senator Chuck Grassley, Republicans who head the judiciary committees in the US Senate and House of Representatives, said that the proposal does not have concrete and foolproof plan to prevent "terrorists" from coming to the US.

Kerry also announced that he will hold talks during the UN General Assembly in New York this week to restart negotiations for a political solution to end the civil war in Syria.

"We have agreed on certain formats and processes by which we should try and proceed," he said.

TRTWorld and agencies