Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf said that the nation is willing to accept refugees from Gaza amid the conflict between Israel and Hamas.
“So many of them don’t want to leave and neither they should have to leave, but for the million that have been displaced just in this current conflict, for those that want to leave, there should be a worldwide refugee scheme,” Yousaf said in a video posted on X. “Because of the numbers, the world should be involved.”
Both Jordan and Egypt, the closest Muslim countries to Gaza, have said they will not accept Palestinian refugees. Some progressive officials in the United States have supported taking in refugees, whereas other conservatives have spoken against it.
Former President Donald Trump said that the U.S. should not accept Gazan refugees. Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis agreed, asserting that while not all Gaza residents are Hamas members, they “are all anti-Semitic.”
Alternatively, several prominent Democrats have voiced their support for measures that would aid civilians in Gaza. Rep. Jamaal Bowman told the New York Post that the United States “should be prepared to welcome refugees from Palestine." Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez told CNN that while surrounding nations are better equipped to assist them, the U.S. could acknowledge its “historic role” by accepting refugees.
Devastation in Gaza
In his announcement, Yousaf acknowledged that Scotland would be the first nation not just in the United Kingdom to accept Gazan refugees, but the first in the world to open their doors. He expressed hope that the country would pave the way for other world powers.
“Let’s say that Scotland will be a place of sanctuary for them as we have shown that kindness and compassion for others. Let us show it once again and this time for the people of Gaza," he continued. "And Scotland is willing to be the first country in the U.K. to take those refugees."
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