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Syria: White Helmets

Question for Home Office

UIN HL9780, tabled on 23 July 2018

To ask Her Majesty's Government, in the light of the statement on the resettlement of White Helmets by the Foreign Secretary and the International Development Secretary on 22 July, whether they will ensure that before members of that group are relocated in the UK, local councils will be informed of the controversial reports relating to the White Helmets and appropriate financial and security support will be given to those councils.

Answered on

6 August 2018

Together with international partners, the UK is working to resettle members of the White Helmets and their families. Any resettlement to the UK would be in line with the established UNHCR process for identifying and resettling the most vulnerable refugees where resettlement is the most appropriate durable solution for their circumstances and only where the eligibility criteria for our schemes is met.

We take the security of our resettlement process extremely seriously. When potential cases are submitted by the UNHCR for consideration, they are carefully screened and considered for suitability for entry to the UK. We take the utmost care to ensure that those people coming here undergo rigorous vetting.

As with all refugees resettled under the Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme, funding would be allocated to local authorities on a per capita basis, with tariff amounts and payment terms clearly set-out in the scheme’s funding instructions. The first 12 months of a refugee's resettlement costs are funded by central government using the Official Development Assistance budget. There is also an exceptional cases fund to assist the most vulnerable refugees.

Answered by

Home Office