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As Neighboring Govs Move To Block Syrian Refugees, Shumlin Remains Open

Santi Palacios
Over 200,000 Syrian refuges, like the ones seen here, crossed the Mediterranean in October. After Friday's attacks in Paris, more than a dozen American governors say they do not want Syrian refugees in their states.

After a terrorist attack in Paris killed 129 people over the weekend, more than a dozen governors announced Monday that Syrian refugees are not welcome in their states. Gov. Peter Shumlin’s spokesman said Shumlin welcomes the opportunity to accept refugees.

The reactions are a response to a Syrian passport found near the site of a suicide bombing outside of the Stade de France and other reports linking the attacks to Syria.

“There is an extensive screening process in place for refugees that come to America and Vermont. The governor has faith in that process,” wrote Shumlin spokesman Scott Coriell in an email. “The Syrian refugees are fleeing horrific violence and war. They are men, women, and children who are fearing for their lives and have no place to go. The question we should be asking is, 'How can we help?'”

Other governors – including in New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Maine – took different approaches. NPR reported that by Monday afternoon, 16 governors were working to close their states to Syrian refugees.

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