Fifth of UK's Syrian refugees settled in Scotland

Syrian refugees in ScotlandImage source, Getty Images

Almost a fifth of the Syrian refugees who came to the UK as part of a special programme have settled in Scotland.

In 2015, the UK government committed to taking in 20,000 Syrians by 2020 through the Syrian vulnerable person resettlement programme.

Data obtained by the SNP from the Scottish Parliament's Information Centre (SPICe) shows that since 2015, 13,818 refugees have arrived in the UK.

Of those, 2,562, or 18.5%, have settled in Scotland.

The SNP said the UK government could and should be doing more to help vulnerable refugees and unaccompanied children.

SNP MSP Ruth Maguire said: "I'm extremely proud that Scotland has risen to its global responsibilities by offering a secure home to refugee families fleeing persecution and conflict.

"They have been welcomed by communities across our country, bringing with them diverse skills and interests and enriching our society."

Persecution and terror

She added: "The UK government meanwhile has sadly neglected its moral obligations, turning a blind eye to a humanitarian crisis.

"Doing as little as they possibly can to help those in need, the Tories are forcing many of those fleeing war, persecution and terror to take dangerous and illegal routes in the search for safety.

"There is no doubt that the UK can and should do more."

A spokesman for the Home Office said: "As a country we can be proud that we have resettled over 14,500 people through our vulnerable persons resettlement scheme, which provides sanctuary to the most vulnerable refugees who have fled Syria and who cannot be effectively supported in the region.

"We are grateful for the ongoing support of more than 290 local authorities across the UK and we continue to work closely together to convert pledges of accommodation into arrivals."