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U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon Tells World Leaders To Fight Anti-Refugee Sentiment At Home: 'Counter Fearmongering With Reassurance'

by Jesse L. / Mar 30, 2016 09:21 PM EDT
Ban Ki Moon during the German Media Award 2016 on March 07 in Baden-Baden, Germany.

On Wednesday, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon of South Korea called on the world's ruling political class to end the paranoia among citizens that often makes it politically difficult or impossible for a country to accept refugees.

Speaking at a one-day conference in Geneva, Switzerland, Ban called the recent round of Islamophobic attacks on the millions of Syrian migrants fleeing the nation's Civil War, "not only demeaning, offensive and counterproductive, but factually wrong," according to a report in the New York Times.

The Secretary-General stressed the skills and wealth of resources that people from other parts of the world can offer and the importance of government officials to urging their residents to consider the issue rationally.

"I call on leaders to counter fearmongering with reassurance and to fight inaccurate information with the truth," Ban said.

Citing the five million asylum seekers accepted by Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq, the he called on other nations to accept an additional 480,000 Syrian refugees still needing assistance within the next three years.

Calling for "an exponential increase in global solidarity," Ban appeared to make a direct appeal to the Western nations that have yet to help relocate Syrians fleeing their native land.

 "Neighboring countries have done far more than their share," Ban said. "Others must now step up."

In a November article from the British publication the Guardian, it was reported that the US has provided asylum to 2,174 Syrian refugees, roughly 0.0007 percent of America's total population.

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