Charities call for "ambitious response" ahead of UN refugees summit

Trocaire suggests tomorrow's summit will be one of "vague promises rather than practical solutions"

Charities call for "ambitious response" ahead of UN refugees summit

Image: Adam Rountree / AP/Press Association Images

Charities are warning that a major UN summit on the migrant and refugee crisis is likely to "fall short".

Representatives of governments from around the world will be gathering in New York tomorrow for the summit, with a Leaders' Summit on Refugees to take place on Tuesday.

Ireland will co-chair tomorrow's event with Jordan.

However, charities are warning that the summit will be one of "vague promises rather than practical solutions".

Trocaire suggests "the outcome will be non-binding" and that "declarations will be based on laws that already exist, but there will be no mechanism to hold any country to account for failure to follow-through on their declarations."

The organisation says that 65 million people are displaced around the world - marking the highest number since World War Two.

It says only 311 of the 4,000 Syrian refugees Ireland has agreed to resettle have arrived in the country.

Oxfam Ireland, meanwhile, has said political commitments by governments are falling "far short" of what is needed to address the crisis.

The charity's Chief Executive Jim Clarken said: “We need an ambitious response. It’s vital that world leaders publicly commit to sharing responsibility for refugees and ensuring people get the support they need.

“Ireland must show leadership by publicly committing to share responsibility for refugees, both by welcoming and protecting more refugees at home in Ireland and making it easier and less dangerous for people forced to flee to reach safety as well as supporting communities hosting refugees elsewhere in the world through humanitarian assistance.”