Washington: US President Barack Obama has approved entry of some 80,000 refugees from across the world, which includes a maximum of 35,000 from Near East and South Asia.
"The Obama administration is committed to maintaining a robust refugee admissions program – a longstanding and important component of America`s overall effort in support of vulnerable people around the world," the White House said in a statement yesterday.
Noting that recent economic downturn has presented new challenges for this and other humanitarian programs, the White House said the US administration has undertaken an in-depth review of the program with a goal of strengthening support to both the refugees and the communities in which they are being resettled.
Besides 35,000 refugees from South and Near East Asia, the US President also approved entry of 15,500 refugees from Africa, 17,000 from East Asia; 5,000 from Latin America and Caribbean and there is an allotted reserve of 5,000.
"The admission of up to 80,000 refugees to the United States during Fiscal Year 2010 is justified by humanitarian concerns or is otherwise in the national interest," Obama said in a memorandum for the US Secretary of State.
The 80,000 admissions numbers shall be allocated among refugees of special humanitarian concern to the US, it said. "The 5,000 unallocated refugee numbers shall be allocated to regional ceilings, as needed," the memorandum said.