This weekend, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has declared over Twitter that Canada welcomes people fleeing persecution. (See below.)
Now, a group called Concerned Canadian Clergy for Refugees wants the Trudeau government to immediately extend transit visas to refugees who've already passed U.S. security clearance but are stranded at American ports of entry.
"Canada should favourably consider temporary transit visas to Canada within this group who have been recognized as refugees by the United States," CCCR stated in a news release, "these individuals, who have passed American security and background checks, should be allowed to have their refugee claims considered by Canada."
The group will hold a news conference at 9:30 a.m. today at Jack Poole Plaza in Vancouver to draw attention to what it's calling a "humanitarian urgency".
There was chaos at several U.S. airports this weekend after President Donald Trump signed an executive order prohibiting entry to people with U.S. visas who are travelling with passports from seven countries: Libya, Sudan, Somalia, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Yemen.
Trump also imposed a permanent ban on Syrian refugees and a four-month ban on all other refugees from entering the United States.
Late yesterday, a U.S. federal judge issued an order blocking the Trump administration from deporting those with visas who were stuck at ports of entry.
However, the court order didn't allow people with passports from these seven countries to enter the United States.
"Canada and the USA have agreed to protect refugees," CCCR declared in its statement. "Given that these security-screened refugees would have been able to disembark their flight for new lives in the USA, and are not considered security risks, Canada should help and help now."
The group added that this is in the spirit of the Safe Third Country Agreement reached between Canada and the United States.
"We should take them in NOW!" CCCR emphasized. "We are reminded of our nation's history when 'none is too many' was our response to Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi Germany. Since those dark days following WWII, Canada has made great strides to be a beacon of hope to refugees seeking safety from around the world."
Trudeau's Saturday tweets have raised questions over whether the Canadian government will take any action. Canada's new minister of immigration, Ahmed Hussen, was born and raised in Somalia, which is one of the countries mentioned in Trump's executive order.
After putting out the tweets above, Trudeau issued a statement over Twitter offering more details about the new U.S. travel restrictions.
The prime minister maintained that U.S. national security adviser Michael Flynn had "confirmed" that dual citizens with Canadian passports will not be affected by the new U.S. travel restriction.
Trudeau is expected to be in Vancouver today for the Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival Parade.
Meanwhile, B.C. premier Christy Clark has tweeted that provincial officials are prepared to work with the federal government to assist stranded refugees.