U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday called for major new international efforts to help refugees.
His speech at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland came on the same day that many migrants drowned in the Aegean Sea. The Greek Coast Guard said at least 42 people, including 17 children, died. Seventy people were rescued, but it is unknown how many remain missing.
Greece is the main destination for people fleeing war and poverty in the Middle East.
Kerry, the top diplomat in the United States, said that President Barack Obama will host a summit on the refugee crisis. It will take place at the United Nations in New York later this year. The goal of the summit is to increase the number of nations willing to help resettle refugees.
He added governments and private groups, including religious groups, will need to work together. He said, they must “integrate refugees into host communities socially, academically, and through access to employment.”
The United States has announced plans to admit 85,000 refugees by November and another 100,000 next year. This week, Senate Democrats blocked a Republican bill that would have barred new refugees from Syria and Iraq.
Republican presidential candidates have criticized the Obama plans to bring in more refugees from Syria and Iraq. They said it is a security risk.
However, Kerry said, “I know we know how to do this in a way that protects the security of our countries."
I'm Anna Matteo.
Pamela Dockins reported on this story for VOANews.com. Bruce Alpert adapted this story for Learning English. Hai Do was the editor.
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Words in This Story
drown – v. to die by being underwater too long and unable to breathe
summit – n. a meeting or series of meetings between the leaders of two or more governments
protect – v. to keep from being harmed
integrate – v. to include, or make part of a larger group or organization
academically – adv. relating to schools and education
access – n. a way of getting near, at, or to something or someone
corruption – n. dishonest or illegal behavior especially by powerful people