The number of #Afghans fleeing the Taliban that Canada plans to accept has been doubled to 40,000, according to #Canada’s foreign minister, fulfilling a campaign pledge made by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
The announcement, which came a week after Mr. Trudeau’s party was re-elected, was sure to be welcomed by #Canadian humanitarian organizations. They had pressed the government to do much more after it initially committed to taking in 20,000 refugees after the Taliban took power last month.
Many Afghans have hoped to flee the country due to the Taliban’s harsh interpretation of Islamic law and repression of women, and members of Mr. Trudeau’s cabinet had stated during the campaign that they would accept more refugees than the original 20,000 figure.
However, the foreign minister’s announcement Monday, while addressing the annual General Assembly at the United Nations, was the first official word of the expansion.
The tripling of the #Afghan effort will put it on par with the Syrian resettlement program that marked Mr. Trudeau’s first year in office. From November 2015 to the end of the following year, it took in 39,636 refugees.
“In fact, #Canadians overwhelmingly demanded that we do more,” he stated. “And, as a result of their generosity and welcoming spirit, we have now committed to welcoming #40,000 #Afghan refugees to Canada — so that they, too, can contribute to our success, while we continue to support their efforts for a more peaceful, tolerant world.”
“It is critical that we continue to ensure that the Taliban respects the right to safe passage so that as many #Afghans as possible can leave,” Mr. Mendicino said. He also stated that the expanded resettlement effort will prioritize women, girls, L.G.B.T. Afghans, and members of ethnic and religious minorities who have previously been targeted by the #Taliban.
Mr. Garneau also used the largest diplomatic stage to criticize China for its treatment of two #Canadian #citizens detained on speculative charges after Canada detained Meng Wanzhou, a top executive of the Chinese technology giant Huawei, on an extradition request from the US nearly three years ago. Ms. Meng was freed on Friday, and China also released two Canadians, Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig.