DAVID Cameron finally gave into mounting pressure yesterday and announced the UK would take in “thousands” more Syrian refugees.

The Prime Minister’s announcement came as politicians, church leaders and charity bosses all labelled his leadership on the refugee crisis as “shameful”.

Making the announcement ahead of meetings in Portugal and Spain, Cameron declined to put a figure on exactly how many more refugees would be taken in.

Cameron also announced an extra £100 million funding pledge for refugee camps on Syria’s borders, which, he claimed would bring the total contribution from the UK to more than £1 billion. This, he said, would make it Britain’s largest-ever response to a humanitarian crisis.

“Given the scale of the crisis and the suffering of people, today I can announce that we will do more, providing resettlement for thousands more Syrian refugees,” he said.

“We will continue with our approach of taking them from the refugee camps. This provides them with a more direct and safe route to the United Kingdom, rather than risking the hazardous journey which has tragically cost so many their lives.”

Speaking later from Spain, Cameron said, Britain would act with “our head and our heart”.

When pushed to give a number of refugees Cameron said: “There is not a number of people we can take that will bring this crisis to an end. To bring this crisis to an end you need a comprehensive approach, you need a government in Libya, you need a solution in Syria.

“And you need to go on with the frankly vital work of our aid budget funding the refugee camps, where the vast majority of Syrian refugees remain.

International Development Secretary Justine Greening later again refused to confirm how many more asylum seekers Britain would accept, saying details would be announced next week. Greening also dismissed any notion that the UK would take part in EU plans to redistribute around 160,000 of the asylum seekers who have arrived in Italy, Greece and Hungary.

The SNP yesterday announced it would use its allocated day in the House of Commons on Wednesday to debate the refugee crisis. The SNP’s group leader in Westminster Angus Robertson said he would use the debate to call for further, urgent action from the UK Government.

He said: “The Prime Minister must outline the full details of whether the UK government will now offer asylum and protection to its fair share of refugees, and how he intends to work with other EU leaders to ensure multi-lateral action and a long-term solution to the crisis.”

Labour’s Shadow Scottish secretary Ian Murray backed the SNP, saying: “The UK Government’s response to this tragedy has been shameful.’’

A petition on the Parliament website urging the Government to accept more refugees has been signed by around 400,000 people.

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