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Switzerland to take in up to 1,600 refugees

Switzerland's participation in the UN resettlement programme focuses on victims from the conflicts in the Middle East. Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

The government has decided to welcome up to 1,600 refugees over two years as part of an international resettlement programme.

This content was published on May 19, 2021 - 14:43
swissinfo.ch/urs

This figure for 2022/2023 is unchanged from the quota for the current period. However, the government said it will take in up to 300 additional refugees who could not be included in a previous programme due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Switzerland will focus on victims of ongoing military conflicts in the Middle East and from the central Mediterranean region, as well as people fleeing persecution.

For practical reasons, the Swiss programme will be limited to refugees from a maximum of five countries, the State Secretariat for Migration said on Wednesday.

The secretariat added that Switzerland’s participation in the resettlement programme under the auspices of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has been an integral part of the country’s refugee policy for several decades.

The Swiss section of the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR)External link has welcomed the latest government decision.

However, it called on Switzerland to increase its contingent in the near future given the demand for more resettlement places worldwide and the limited asylum requests in Switzerland.

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