Number of refugees resettled in the US reaches 700

During the past week, eighteen refugees from Eritrea and Somalia left Malta to begin a new life in the United States.

The United States has been actively engaged in refugee resettlement from Malta since 2006 and has resettled 707 refugees during that time.

The latest group of refugees will be resettled in several different cities across the U.S.  Mr. Richard M. Mills, Chargé d’Affaires, a.i. hosted a reception at the Ambassador’s residence in Attard to welcome the refugees to their new lives in America.

“The U.S. Refugee Resettlement program represents a small contribution by the people of the United States to help alleviate the world’s suffering,” Mills said.

“This programmed is a success thanks to the collaboration of the Malta government and the hard work of the staff at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the International Organization for Migration and the people of the United States of America.  It is hard to imagine a responsible programme dealing with migrants without UNHCR, IOM and dedicated non-governmental organizations like the Jesuit Refugee Service and the Emigrants Commission."

On June 20 the refugees will be gathering in the Upper Barraka Gardens to celebrate World Refugee Day. “We want to remind the governments of the world that this human tragedy cannot continue and that all governments must respect the basic, universal human rights of all people,” Mills said.

Once they arrive in the U.S., each refugee will be assigned a sponsor agency that provides initial services such as housing, food, and clothing, as well as referral to medical care, employment services, and other support during a transition period lasting up to two years in order to ensure integration and assimilation. 

“The United States is a nation of immigrants and has a long history of welcoming refugees. The U.S. Refugee Resettlement Program reflects the highest values and aspirations of compassion, generosity, and leadership characteristic of the American people,” the embassy said in a statement.

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