£300,000 For Refugee Aid Charities

1 October 2015, 17:46

The Scottish Government will provide £300,000 for humanitarian aid for refugees arriving in Europe.

The cash is to be divided between charities including the British Red Cross and Mercy Corps who have humanitarian operations on the Greek islands.

Money will also go to Glasgow the Caring City and Edinburgh Direct Aid.

International development minister Humza Yousaf is to visit the Greek island of Lesbos this weekend to see the response operation first-hand and learn about what more can be done to support refugees who have made their way to Europe.

Lesbos is one of the Greek islands struggling to cope with the arrival of thousands of refugees, mostly from Syria, travelling from nearby Turkey.

Mr Yousaf said: "The Scottish Government and the people of Scotland are committed to helping the most vulnerable people in their hour of need.

"We know that we must do more to help those men, women and children coming to Europe seeking protection and refuge.

"I hope that today's announcement of #300,000 will go some way towards helping those who most need our help.

"Volunteers and staff of international aid organisations like the Red Cross and Mercy Corps are working day in, day out to provide humanitarian assistance to those arriving in Europe, having made the perilous journey across the sea.

"I believe it is essential and important that we extend our hand of friendship to those stepping into Europe, coming to our shores looking for the very basic freedoms we often take for granted.

"It is right that we reaffirm our solidarity with the volunteers, staff and Greek authorities and all those involved in responding daily, on the frontline, to this the biggest mass movement of people of recent times.''