The Green Party criticised the government for not doing enough after it promised to resettle up to 20,000 Afghan refugees, with only 5,000 to be welcomed in the first year.
Benali Hamdache, Green Party migration and refugee support spokesperson, said:
“Offering refuge to those fleeing violence and persecution from the Taliban should be a fundamental part of who we are as a country, but unfortunately this is more empty PR from Boris Johnson.
“While Canada is taking in 20,000 refugees immediately, the UK’s insistence that it can only accept 5,000 in the first year will leave thousands of people in extreme danger. Canada and the UK both had soldiers on the ground in Afghanistan. Both were part of the attempts to build a new government. But only one part of the coalition is living up to their responsibilities.
“At the same time, the UK government should be providing local authorities with more funds to be able to support refugee children. The cost of resettlement should be fully borne by the national government, with the money transferred to councils so they can provide the services so desperately needed.
“After 20 years of involvement in Afghanistan, the UK shares responsibility for this crisis. We must act now in order to make people safe and show both Afghans and the rest of the world that we are a leader on human rights and compassion.
“Instead, these current plans make us out to be a populist island, cutting itself off from the rest of the world and failing to live up to our responsibilities.”