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John Kerry: U.S. to Accept 85,000 Refugees in 2016, 100,000 in 2017

by Associated Press /
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry (L) walks with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier (R) prior to a meeting with a group of refugees fleeing Syria at Villa Borsig in Berlin, Germany on Sept. 20.POOL / Reuters

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The U.S. is offering new details about its plan to ease the Syrian refugee crisis by significantly increasing the number of worldwide refugees it will take in over the next two years.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says the U.S. will accept 85,000 refugees from around the world next year, up from 70,000, and the number will rise to 100,000 in 2017.

Aides to Kerry say that many, though not all, of the additional refugees would be Syrian.

The migrants would be referred by the United Nations, screened by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and resettled around America.

Kerry made the announcement Sunday during a visit to Berlin after meeting with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier to discuss the mass migration of Syrians fleeing their civil war.

Kerry's announcement came amid a growing call for the U.S. to do more to relief the escalating crisis. Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton said Sunday on CBS News' "Face the Nation" that as many as 65,000 Syrian refugees should be taken in.

“We’re facing the worst refugee crisis since the end of World War II, and I think the United States has to do more,” the former secretary of State said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” on Sunday. “I would like to see us move from what is a good start with 10,000 to 65,000 and begin immediately to put into place the mechanisms for vetting the people that we would take in.”

President Obama said his administration will let in at least 10,000 Syrian refugees.

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