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The ONE Campaign’s reaction to Swedish aid diversion

Responding to Minister Isabella Lovin’s comments, made in Dagens Nhyeter on 25 November, concerning the government’s decision to divert up to 30% of Sweden’s aid budget to cover the cost of the refugee crisis, Diane Sheard from the campaign group ONE said:

“It’s absolutely right that resources to help refugees are found – and fast – but the world’s poorest must not foot the bill. Reallocating promised aid not only risks the lives of the world’s poorest, it puts Sweden’s past development achievements at risk.

“Finding funds for both refugees and aid at the same time can be done: the EU has led the way by reaching a clear agreement on this in its 2016 budget. Sweden was a party to that decision, so it must deliver at home what it has already agreed at the EU level. It’s just a matter of political will.

“European governments must be more innovative in sourcing the necessary funds to meet the needs of refugees arriving on our shores. Norway announced this week that it would raise taxes on airfares in order to boost funding for refugees. Raiding the aid budget cannot be the ‘go to’ solution – it’s neither just, nor sustainable.”