The world is in the midst of the worst refugee crisis since World War II, but at the same time, out of the 800,000 refugees who have been brought into the United States since the 9/11 attacks, "none of them have been involved in an act of domestic terrorism," United States Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power said Wednesday.
"We take in information from all of our partners, information, and information sharing has been enhanced as it needed to be in the wake of ISIL's rise," Power told MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell,
just shortly after giving a major speech on the immigration crisis earlier in the day.
For most Syrian refugees, there will be an additional layer of screening, Power told Mitchell, as ISIS has set up its foothold in Syria.
"We are confident that we can pursue our dual aims to keep the American people safe, but also to do our fair share of responding to the largest refugee crisis since the second World War," Power said. "We also think again that if we can get more countries to step up ... if that burden can be spread more equitably around the world, it will be easier to have systems in place to process people in an orderly way."
With the flood of refugees coming out of the Middle East, there needs to be systems that allow the kind of screening that has been put in place for the United States, she continued.
Meanwhile, Turkey, which was rocked on Tuesday after suicide bombers attacked the international airport in Istanbul, is a major ally of the United States, said Power, and even though it's not known for sure who carried out the attack, "we will work with them in London, [give] any assistance to track them down and make sure they're held accountable."
Turkey is a key partner on intelligence, homeland security, through NATO, she continued, and "with their generosity in sheltering 2.6 million Syrian refugees, that makes them a key partner to humanity because that's not something a lot of countries would have taken it upon themselves to do."
Power said as a diplomat she does not wish to become involved in presidential politics, but admitted that calls from presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump and other Republicans to ban immigrants from countries that have terrorist issues hits her personally as an Irish immigrant.
"Being an immigrant to myself, being an Irish immigrant, coming from a country when I came to the United States in 1979, there were multiple terrorist attacks carried out in the town in which I lived," Power told Mitchell. "If that were enough to ban me from this country or to ban the Irish, I wouldn't have the privilege and certainly wouldn't be representing the United States of America."
And while many may believe that "the sins of a single individual, it's a tendency to apply and lately, it's been something that's not only not true to our values and something I think again later we would be embarrassed by if we acted upon it, but it's also not in our interest," the ambassador said.
"Individual responsibility and individual accountability is essential," continued Power, "and that is what we are pursuing in our fight against ISIL and will continue to pursue. Part of countering violent extremism is showing us for the inclusive society that we are and as others have noted, drawing on the incredible help that we get from our Muslim partners in the region."
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