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U.N. talks to Germany about resettling 10,000 Syrian refugees

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

GENEVA (Reuters) - The United Nations refugee agency is talking to Germany about resettling up to 10,000 Syrian refugees, UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards said on Tuesday.

UNHCR was also working with other European governments to find ways to resettle some of the 1.6 million Syrians who have fled the country, a number the United Nations expects to reach 3.45 million by the end of 2013, Edwards said.

The U.N. agency plans to hold a meeting on the subject with governments around the end of June in Geneva, but details and the participants were not yet known, he said. Specific numbers had not yet been discussed with other countries.

However, resettlement is only an option for the most vulnerable cases and the bulk of the refugee burden will still fall on four of Syria's neighbors: Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Iraq.

"The priority right now is to maintain asylum in that region," he said. "But yes we do think it's important that the countries outside the immediate region show solidarity with the countries most affected by this crisis."

The vast majority of refugees wanted to return to Syria, Edwards added.

(Reporting by Tom Miles; Editing by Alistair Lyon)

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/130611/un-talks-germany-about-resettling-10000-syrian-refugees