12 March 2015

Switzerland has announced it will facilitate the entry, and accord protection, to 3,000 persons who have fled Syria. Over a period of three years, 2,000 resettlement places will be allocated to vulnerable people from Syria and 1,000 humanitarian visas will be granted to spouses and underage children of persons with temporary admission status in Switzerland. This measure is expected to speed up the reunification of families, as beneficiaries of temporary admission usually have to wait three years after being granted the status before requesting family reunification; in addition, amongst other conditions, they must be independent of receiving social support.  In 2014, out of the 3,700 Syrian nationals who were granted protection in Switzerland, 2,800 received ‘temporary admission’.

The Swiss authorities have also called for a coordinated response to the refugee crisis at a European level.

Furthermore, the Swiss authorities have pledged over 45 million euros of aid to Syria and its neighbouring countries.

The Swiss Refugee Council has long called for an increased role for Switzerland in helping people fleeing war in Syria. It has welcomed the recent decisions of the Swiss authorities as a strong sign of solidarity with refugees and of Syria’s neighbouring countries that are hosting most refugees.


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This article was first published on the ECRE website on 12 March 2015 and subsequently appeared on the ECRE Weekly Bulletin of 13 March 2015. You can subscribe to the Weekly Bulletin here