EU refugee crisis: Boris Johnson says London should help as Mayor of Liverpool offers sanctuary to 100 Syrian refugees

James Nickerson
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Boris Johnson said London should take those who are in fear of their lives (Source: Getty)

As scenes of refugees making their way from Syria across Europe become more harrowing, the Mayor of London has said the capital should face up to its "moral responsibilities".

On the question of whether to take in Syrian refugees in particular, Boris Johnson said London should "take people fleeing persecution and those plainly in fear for their lives".

Read more: UK migration crisis - How much would it cost the UK to let in all the asylum seekers?

"London will of course face up to its moral responsibilities, but we must not become a magnet or pole of attraction for economic migrants,” he added.

It is also time to look harder at what can be done in Syria to solve the problem at source. Of course intervention has not worked in Iraq or Libya. But no one could say that non-intervention was working in Syria.

Johnson's comments came on the same day the Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson sought cross-party support for Liverpool to give sanctuary to 100 refugees fleeing the Syria crisis.

If successful, Anderson will seek Home Office support for the necessary resources. He also suggested other local authorities act in a similar fashion.

And in an apparent U-turn on a statement he made yesterday, Prime Minister David Cameron also said Britain would fulfill its “moral responsibility" towards those fleeing wars.

Read more: EU refugee crisis - Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund show of support for asylum seekers

This week Cameron came under pressure from political parties in the UK, including his own, as well as internationally from officials in Germany, France and the Council of Europe.

Most recently, French President Fran├žois said some countries “were not shouldering their moral obligations” at a press conference in Paris, as Germany and France agreed to push for binding refugee quotas for EU members.

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