Thousands of Syrian refugees in Jordan have been interviewed by the United Nations (UN) as part of their application for relocation to Canada. More than 8,8000 refugees have been interviewed by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), with around 1,000 seen on 11 December alone.
This comes after the new Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau promised to accept refugees more quickly after his election in October. Helene Daubelcour, senior external relations officer for UNHCR Jordan, said, We will transfer the files of all of them, some of them we have already transferred the files to Canada, but very shortly all their files will be transferred to Canada, and we think that they are okay for transfer to Canada.
The UNHCR say the interviews are only a preliminary step in the process. However, with thousands expected to move in the next few weeks, many refugees will be hoping to start their new life in Canada as soon as possible.
Syrian refugee Um Mohammad, who has been living in Jordan for three years, said: They sent me a message and later they called me and I came to do an interview. The main reason I want to leave is for my child. I only have one son and education here is expensive. I dont have any information about my husband for three-and-a-half years.
The first 162 refugees landed in Toronto on 10 December, with Trudeau promising to bring in 10,000 before 31 December, and 15,000 by the end of February 2016. The new Prime Minister had to reduce that target from 25,000, after the Paris attacks promoted the government to undergo more stringent security measures.