LANSING — Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder says he is suspending efforts to bring Syrian refugees to Michigan in light of the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris on Friday.
“Given the terrible situation in Paris, I’ve directed that we put on hold our efforts to accept new refugees until the U.S. Department of Homeland Security completes a full review of security clearances and procedures,” Snyder said in a statement released by his office on Sunday.
“Michigan is a welcoming state and we are proud of our rich history of immigration,” the statement said. “But our first priority is protecting the safety of our residents.”
More than 120 people were killed in Paris on Friday night, and hundreds more injured, in a series of suicide bombings and attacks on nightspots using automatic weapons.
Multiple news agencies have reported that a Syrian passport found at the scene of one of the attacks matches a refugee who traveled through Greece.
Snyder said in September he was working with the federal government to determine the process for accepting refugees from the ongoing crisis in Syria and the Middle East.
“Isn’t that part of being a good Michigander?” he asked at the time, while stressing that the refugees would have to be carefully screened to assure they were not security threats.
State Rep. Gary Glenn, R-Midland, issued a statement Saturday night calling on Snyder to “reverse his call to relocate Syrian refugees in the state.”
“We should not rush to offer an open door to the high-risk importation of individuals from a known hotbed of Islamic extremism,” Glenn said, disputing assertions that the refugees can be safely vetted.
Snyder decided to halt the refugee program on Saturday…