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EU Should Boost Aid for Syria Refugees, Human Rights Watch Says

The European Union should provide a “safe haven” in all member states for Syrian refugees to ensure they don’t face detention and deportation in countries such as Greece, Human Rights Watch said.

Easing access by simplifying visa procedures and providing temporary residence permits to Syrians throughout the EU would reduce the burden on Syria’s other neighbors, where more than 500,000 Syrians have fled, the New York-based organization said in a statement today.

Greece, the main E.U. point of entry for undocumented migrants, deported 44 Syrian nationals in the first 11 months of this year and has only granted protection to six Syrians since March 2011, Human Rights Watch said. Some 9,000 Syrians have been apprehended in Greece since the beginning of last year, the organization said.

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