Spain to welcome refugees

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Madrid, Sep 4: Cities across Spain have said they want to help form a network of places where residents can sign up to welcome some of the thousands of refugees desperately seeking safety in Europe.

Barcelona's initiative to join cities together in a network giving shelter to refugees has been met with an outpouring of support from local governments across Spain, with at least a dozen city councils saying they want to take part, The Local news portal reported.

After Spain's capital city, Madrid, announced earlier this week that it would join Barcelona, Valencia, Pamplona, Córdoba, various cities on Mallorca, and many others have said they will follow suit.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said he was "horrified" by images of a drowned toddler and called on a united effort by Europe to solve the Syria problem.

The two left-wing mayors of Barcelona and Madrid, Ada Colau and Manuela Carmena, said they would meet later on Friday to discuss plans for establishing the networks where residents could register to have refugees stay in their homes.

Barcelona city hall has set aside 200,000 euros (about $223,000) in aid to the Service for Immigrants, Migrants and Refugees (Saier).

Hundreds of people have already contacted authorities in Barcelona to offer to provide shelter to asylum seekers.

IANS

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