03/21/2016 12:38 EDT | Updated 03/22/2017 05:12 EDT

Filippo Grandi, UN Refugee Chief, Calls Canada A Model For The World

And he's hoping to see this country make a further commitment to Syrians.

OTTAWA — The head of the United Nation's refugee agency says he'd like to see Canada's private sponsorship program exported around the world.

Filippo Grandi says while it is important for governments to show leadership by resettlement programs, having private citizens also engaged encourages a feeling of solidarity for the world's most vulnerable.

Canada is one of only a handful of states that currently run such programs and private groups have sponsored more than 9,000 Syrians in recent months.

UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Filippo Grandi holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, March 21, 2016. (Photo: Sean Kilpatrick/CP)

Grandi says Canada as a whole has been a leader in global Syrian resettlement and that's why he chose to visit here this week.

He says he'd like the Canadian government to help other countries roll out programs like the one the Liberals put in place to resettle 25,000 Syrians in a matter of three months.

Grandi says he hopes to see Canada make a further commitment to Syrians at a pledging conference in Geneva later this month.


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