Germany proposes short-term jobs for 500K Syrians

BAQAA REFUGEE CAMP, Jordan -- Germany proposes creating up to 500,000 short-term jobs to help Syrian refugees survive in overburdened Middle Eastern host countries, the minister for economic co-operation said during a visit to Jordan on Tuesday.

See Full Article

Germany will raise the idea at next week's annual Syria aid conference in London, Gerd Mueller told The Associated Press.

"It's called cash for work, to employ Syrian refugees, but also unemployed Jordanians ... in building schools, infrastructure," Mueller said, adding that participants would be paid about 300 euros ($325) a month.

Germany would initially contribute 200 million euros ($217 million), with money to start flowing in mid-2016, and would ask other donors to contribute, according to a handout from his delegation.

"This program ... can create 500,000 jobs in the whole region with 2 billion" euros, Mueller said in Jordan's Baqaa refugee camp, established almost half a century ago for Palestinian refugees, but now housing thousands of displaced Syrians.

Almost 4.3 million Syrians have fled civil war since 2011 and most remain in the region, mainly in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey. Some 1.2 million are registered in Lebanon and about 630,000 in Jordan, most living outside formal refugee camps.

Over the past year, cuts in food and cash support for refugees -- a result of severe aid shortfalls -- helped trigger an exodus from the region to Europe. Hundreds of thousands of Syrians have reached Europe, many heading to Germany, because the cuts made life in host countries increasingly difficult.

Thousands more Syrians are still trying to escape fighting in their homeland. This includes some 17,000 people, among them many women and children, who have amassed on the border with Jordan, waiting to be allowed to enter. Some have been living for months in the remote desert area without proper shelter, amid warnings by aid groups that conditions are deteriorating.

Jordan has only let in several dozen Syrians a day, citing concerns that Islamic State extremists will try to enter Jordan posing as refugees.

International aid officials have urged Jordan to speed up such checks and move refugees to an UN-run camp in Jordan that stands more than half empty.

Mueller said he asked Jordan's prime minister to "examine urgently if he can make an exception and to house these Syrian refugees in the UN camp."

At the London conference, labour rights for Syrian refugees in the regional host countries will be a key issue.

Jordan and Lebanon, faced with high domestic unemployment, prevent most refugees from working legally, though many hold low-paying informal jobs.

Jordanian officials, while short on specifics, have said they would offer a new approach in London, including setting up special economic zones to encourage foreign investment and potentially create thousands of jobs, including for Syrian refugees. Goods made there would have easier access to European markets.

Mueller said he supports the idea.

"Jordan needs investments, jobs, an outlook for the future of the country, for its own population and for the Syrian refugees," the minister said.

In London, Germany will advocate for "preferential trade arrangements, custom arrangements and tax privileges for investments in Jordan," he said.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Montreal's iconic Expo 67 exhibition left lasting impact on country

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- It was five decades ago that Montreal welcomed the world to Expo 67, an international exhibition and iconic event that saw millions of visitors flock to the city over six months. The event would put Montreal on the map and is remembered fondly by those who attended as drawing them into a futuristic fantasy world and opening their eyes to people and places they'd never experienced before. Source
  • Large explosion rocks Syrian capital

    World News CTV News
    BEIRUT - A large explosion rocked the Syrian capital early Thursday, followed by a fire near the Damascus airport, Syrian opposition activists and a monitor said. The explosion was heard across the capital, jolting residents awake, the head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights Rami Abdurrahman said. Source
  • Red Bull heir seeks another delay in alleged hit-and-run in Thailand

    World News CTV News
    BANGKOK - Prosecutors in Thailand say an heir to the Red Bull fortune has asked for another delay in facing charges over an alleged hit-and-run that killed a police officer almost five years ago. Vorayuth "Boss" Yoovidhya has been a no-show for meetings with prosecutors on several occasions, complaining through his attorney of unfair treatment or citing duties abroad. Source
  • Man rescued after 47 days stranded on mountain in Nepal

    World News CBC News
    A Taiwanese man who was missing on a mountain in Nepal for 47 days was rescued Wednesday, but his girlfriend died just three days before they were discovered, trekking officials said. Asian Trekking agency official Madhav Basnet said 21-year-old Liang Sheng Yueh was found Wednesday on a ledge under a waterfall and was flown by helicopter to a hospital in the capital, Kathmandu. Source
  • Ohio man to appear in court after kidnapping neighbour, holding her in pit

    World News CTV News
    WILMINGTON, Ohio - Police say an Ohio man accused of kidnapping a neighbour and keeping her trapped in a small pit is to appear in court on a charge of kidnapping. Blanchester police say 45-year-old Dennis Dunn is scheduled for a hearing Thursday in Clinton County Municipal Court in Wilmington. Source
  • Oilers take early series lead after wild 3rd period in Anaheim

    Canada News CBC News
    Adam Larsson scored his second goal with 4:40 remaining, Mark Letestu had two power-play goals and the Edmonton Oilers defeated the Anaheim Ducks 5-3 in Game 1 of the second round on Wednesday night. Cam Talbot made 33 saves for the Oilers, who regained the lead when Larsson's centring pass from behind the net struck Ducks defenceman Josh Manson's skate and went in. Source
  • Hong Kong widens crackdown on pro-democracy activists

    World News CTV News
    Hong Kong authorities expanded their crackdown on the Chinese-controlled territory's opposition with a fresh round of arrests of pro-democracy activists on Thursday. Police detained up to nine activists for their apparent involvement in an anti-China protest last year, according to social media posts from two political parties, Demosisto and League of Social Democrats, whose members were among those arrested. Source
  • Analysis shows Syrian government behind sarin attack, France says

    World News CTV News
    PARIS -- France said that the chemical analysis of samples taken from a deadly sarin gas attack in Syria earlier this month "bears the signature" of President Bashar Assad's government and shows it was responsible. Source
  • New fighting in South Sudan displaces 25,000 people

    World News CTV News
    NAIROBI, Kenya -- At least 25,000 people were displaced after fighting in the town of Kodok, according to a spokesman for the humanitarian group Doctors Without Borders, one day after the top United Nations official in South Sudan warned of a government offensive on the town. Source
  • 5 key moments from tonight's B.C. election debate

    Canada News CBC News
    The leaders traded jabs on three main categories — leadership, the economy and housing — during Wednesday's election debate. Here are five moments we found most interesting: Housing B.C. Election Debate 20172:42 Source