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Bright Blue, the independent think tank for liberal conservatism, has revealed – using a Freedom of Information request to the Home Office – that only 0.23% of Syrian refugees admitted to the UK in 2017 under the Government’s flagship Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme (VPRS) were Christians. That accounts for 1 in 400.

Prior to the civil war beginning in Syria, it was estimated that 10% of the Syrian population was Christian.

But last year, the Home Office reported that only 1.5% of the Syrian refugees resettled in the UK under the Government’s Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme in 2016 were Christians. Today, we can reveal that in 2017, that figure dropped to 11 of 4,832 (0.23%).

Commenting, James Dobson, Senior Researcher at Bright Blue, said:

“Christians are being subjected to horrendous persecution in Syria. Yet, the figures revealed by Bright Blue today show the Government is failing to offer sufficient Syrian Christians safe harbour in Britain.

“Prior to the Syrian civil war, 10% of Syrians were forecast to be Christian. To ensure fair, not special, treatment for Syrian Christians, the Government should commit to 10% of Syrian refugees admitted to the UK through the Vulnerable Persons Relocation Scheme being Christian.”

In its recent report Britain Breaking Barriers, Bright Blue recommended:

The Government should commit to ensuring that at least 10% of the Syrian refugees that are taken in under the UK’s Vulnerable Person Relocation Scheme are Christians. This would mean that Christians from Syria are receiving fair, not special, treatment in the UK’s refugee system.