Cameron in Jordan for Syria refugee talks

Prime Minister David Cameron visits the Sed El Boucrieh School with Lebanese Education minister, Mr Elias Bou Saab, in Beirut, Lebanon. (Reuters)

British Prime Minister David Cameron arrived in Jordan on Monday for a visit to a Syrian refugee camp and talks with King Abdullah II, the foreign ministry in Amman said.

Before Jordan, Cameron toured a Syrian refugee camp in Lebanon on his one-day visit to discuss the refugee crisis gripping the Middle East and Europe.

The trip came as Cameron appointed a minister to oversee the promised resettlement in Britain of 20,000 Syrian refugees from Middle East camps over the next five years.“The queen has been pleased to approve the appointment of Richard Harrington MP as a Parliamentary Under Secretary of State jointly at the Home Office, the Department for Communities and Local Government, and the Department for International Development,” said a statement from the Downing Street office of David Cameron.

The British premier met refugees at a camp outside the town of Terbol in the Bekaa valley in eastern Lebanon, an AFP correspondent reported.

Lebanon hosts more than 1.1 million Syrian refugees, many of whom live in informal tented settlements in the arid valley.

Cameron said he wanted “to see for myself and to hear for myself stories of refugees and what they need”.

“I’m at a refugee camp in Lebanon, hearing some heartbreaking stories,” he tweeted. “British aid is doing so much to help.”

He said Britain was already the second largest donor to Syrian refugee camps in the region.

“We will go on doing that including increasing the amount of money we are giving to educate Syrian children here in Lebanon and elsewhere,” he said. “I think that's absolutely vital.”

Cameron to seek consensus on striking ISIS

Meanwhile, Cameron will seek to reach a consensus on striking Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants in Syria despite the election of an anti-war leader of Britain’s opposition Labor Party, his spokeswoman said on Monday.

“The PM thinks there is a strong case for taking action against ISIL in Syria in the way that the UK is taking action against ISIL next door in Iraq,” his spokeswoman said.

“That remains his view. It hasn’t changed because there has been a new leader of the opposition elected but, as he has said before, he wants to proceed with consensus on this matter and I think that is how he will continue to approach the issue.”

Jeremy Corbyn, who Labor supporters elected as leader on Saturday, favors scrapping Britain’s nuclear weapons and has said he would oppose any attempt to extend the mission in Syria.

(With AFP, Reuters)

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:46 - GMT 06:46
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