This week, I asked the Foreign Secretary whether the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees would work with the UK as an independent and neutral party to identify those Afghan refugees eligible for resettlement. I was pleased to receive the assurance that the relationship with the UN will be one of the critical factors the Government will consider in shaping the resettlement scheme.
You can read the full exchange with the Foreign Secretary below:
When we designed the Syrian resettlement scheme, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees played a crucial role as an independent and neutral party to identify those eligible for resettlement and then make the connections with the authorities of the countries willing to take them in, including the UK. What discussions have taken place between the Government and the UNHCR doing this work, and if it is my right hon. Friend’s view that the UNHCR is not going to be able to undertake that in this different situation, who does he feel is best placed to undertake that key role?
My hon. Friend raises a good point. The Prime Minister has spoken to the UN Secretary-General, including on this, and I spoke to Jean Arnault, the special representative on Afghanistan. Without giving all the details, I can say that of course the relationship with the UN will be one of the critical factors we consider in shaping the resettlement scheme.