Yvette Cooper pays tribute to Jewish community’s efforts on refugee crisis


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Yvette Cooper MP, chair of Labour’s Refugee Taskforce, has paid tribute to Jewish efforts to avert the refugee crisis and particularly the work of an Israeli charity working in Greece.

Speaking at a Board of Deputies event at Westminster on Women Refugees, Ms Cooper said: “I want to pay tribute to IsraAid, one of the charities doing most to help refugees in Greece.”  Ms Cooper added that 67 per cent of recent arrivals to Europe were women and children, with additional risks and dangers for their safety.

Also speaking at the event , organised by the Board’s Women’s Group and Social Action Group, were Naama Gorodischer, the Global Programmes Manager of IsaAid, who is stationed on the Greek island of Lesbos; Dr Edie Friedman, the executive director of the Jewish Council for Racial Equality and Andrej Mahecic of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees UK.

Mr Mahecic told the capacity audience that it was “essential to safeguard the refugees most at risk” and that these were mainly women and children.

Ms Gorodischer added that since 2001 IsraAid had helped more than 1 million people in 34 countries.

Dr Friedman said that it was essential that we did not give up our resolve to do something about the crisis, adding, “We provide for refugees not only to help them but to restore their lost dignity.”

The event, held on International Women’s Day, was hosted by Louise Ellman MP and was also addressed by Board Chief Executive Gillian Merron. A vote of thanks was given by Jackie Naftalin of  Board’s  Social Action Group and Women’s Group.

Photo. Left to Right Naama Gorodischer, Andrej Mahecic, Gillian Merron, Yvette Cooper, Louise Ellman and Dr Edie Friedman

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