In just three days last week 840 Portuguese families contacted the High Commission for Migrations (ACM) to offer help and assistance in receiving Afghan refugees.
Expresso reports that 350 were willing to offer accommodation, while offers of essential items and other forms of help ran into their thousands.
NGOs are also at the ready with solutions even for employment – and the ACM is now drawing up a list as the country waits to see how many refugees make it out of the country and into Portugal.
For now, the government’s pledge has been to take ‘at least 50’ fleeing Afghans. But this is just a bare minimum. Reports since this pledge was made have suggested at least 166 Afghans are on a priority list to come here due to their connections with international forces plus the 50 originally mentioned who have helped NATO and European Union initiatives.
Beyond these 216 refugees, more could arrive as a result of ‘protection operations led by the United Nations’.
In total, Portugal ‘could receive more than 300 Afghans’, the press is saying today, citing a source from the ministry of interior administration.