UN chief to convene meeting on refugees given current refugee crisis in Europe

In light of the influx of refugees to Europe, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will host a high-level meeting on migration and refugees in New York on Sept. 30, said a spokesman of the secretary-general Tuesday.

“With the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals later this month, the secretary-general invited leaders to a high-level meeting on migration and refugees,” said Stephane Dujarric, spokesman for the secretary-general.

Ban has spoken to the heads of government of the Austria, Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia to discuss the arrival of refugees and migrants in Europe, according to Dujarric.

Recognising the challenges this poses to some member states, Ban stressed the individual and collective responsibility of European states to respond responsibly and humanely.

Moreover, the secretary-general stressed that the large majority of people arriving in Europe are refugees fleeing war and violence, who have a right to seek asylum without any form of discrimination.

“Commending the efforts of many European leaders, he encouraged the European Union countries to live up to their obligations and the standards they have set. He underlined the need for compassion and global solidarity, and applauded the inspiring examples that have been displayed all over Europe by private citizens and civil society,” said Dujarric, referring to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

In addition, Ban assured European leaders of the United Nations’ readiness, through its agencies, to continue supporting their efforts to develop a response that is effective, feasible and in line with universal human rights and humanitarian standards, including the right to claim asylum, Dujarric said.

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