by Adel Al Serri from Milton, Ontario
Goal 1 000
- The UN has declared the state of humanitarian emergency in Yemen;
- Around 80% of the population is in dire need of assistance, food, medical supplies, fuel, and access to safe zones;
- The media has not given the conflict in Yemen its fair share of coverage, and the situation in Yemen is not any less severe than in Iraq or Syria;
- Amnesty International has documented many human rights violations by different fighting parties against civilians;
- Violations include random bombardment of residential areas, kidnapping, and sieges around highly dense cities;
- The Groups of Five (G5) program allows five (or more) Canadian citizens and permanent residents to sponsor a refugee living abroad to come to Canada, as long as the refugee is registered with the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) or foreign state; however, on October 19, 2012, the Government of Canada has temporarily exempted Syrians and Iraqis fleeing their local conflicts from the requirement of refugee status with the UNHCR; and
- The stance of the government of Canada government towards refugees from Syria and Iraq is a world example of compassion and humanity, and Canadians aware of the situation in Yemen are seeking your help to grant them the same support and the ability to sponsor their families and loved ones via the G5 program, along with the exemptions mentioned above.
We, the undersigned, citizens and residents of Canada, call upon the Government of Canada to extend the G5 exemptions granted to Iraqi and Syrian refugees to Yemeni refugees.