Doha – A number of participants at the 2017 Doha Forum praised Qatar’s provision of education for 100 Syrian refugee students at Sorbonne University in France as part of Qatar’s support to them in the difficult circumstances they face in pursuing their university studies.

In a session on ‘Socio – Economic Issues of Refugee Crisis: Economic, Education, and Health,’ speakers said that the agreement signed by Qatar with the Sorbonne University started with 100 Syrian students studying in all disciplines available in the French university such as law, political science, business management, mathematics and other disciplines.

The participants said that this initiative contributed to the integration of refugees into French society, and will enable them to enter the labor market. It will also protect students and put them on the right track by enabling them to obtain a certificate from the best universities in the world.

Touching on the situation of refugees in the world, the participants pointed out that 39 percent of about 65 million refugees and the displaced around the world live in the countries of the Middle East, and 85 percent of them stay in developing countries.

They called on the international community to shoulder its role and work together to confront the challenges faced by refugees around the world, away from adherence to national, cultural and religious standards through developing tools to deal with this worsening humanitarian situation.

The Syrian refugee crisis is the biggest crisis of the modern era, they said, pointing out that millions of people have forcibly left their homes, a matter which made them face difficult conditions in the countries of asylum.

The speakers discussed the challenges faced by refugees in the European countries which ranged from the challenge of language and culture to the lack of social welcome. Other obstacles included the inability to access schools for children, which threatens a whole generation of uneducated Syrian children.

They pointed out that statistics showed that 1.3 million Syrian children were out of school, despite the great efforts of the major asylum countries such as Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon.

The session was chaired by Khaled Khalifa, Regional Representative to the GCC, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), and key speakers were Amb. Gustavo Zlauvinen, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Argentina, Antti Yrjana Pentikainen, Executive Director, Network for Religious and traditional peacemakers – Finland, Dr. Hadia Yahiaouia, Professor of Political Science and Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Political Studies and International Relations – Algeria, Dr. Terence Schum, Technological and Higher Education Institute – Hong Kong, Mohamed Lemine Saleck, Secretary General, Center Essahifa for Strategic Studies – Mauritania, and Kinan AlAli, MA student in Classical Archeology at the University of ParisI Sorbonne Pantheon. (QNA)

Source: Qatar News Agency