Jordan’s King Abdullah II has said that people in his country are at “boiling point” due to the influx of thousands of refugees from Syria, BBC reported Tuesday. Abdullah’s comments came on the heels of the U.N. refugee agency’s statement Sunday that about 20,000 Syrian refugees have been stranded on the war-torn country’s border with Jordan.
Jordan has been accepting refugees from Palestine and Iraq for decades and now asylum-seekers from Syria make up nearly 20 percent of the country’s population, BBC reported. “For the first time we can’t do it any more,” Abdullah said.
Abdullah told BBC the influx has put enormous pressure on Jordan’s social services, infrastructure and economy. He noted that international powers would have to offer more help if it wanted Jordan to keep accepting refugees. Abdullah added that the kingdom’s public services has been under strain after Jordan spent 25 percent of the state budget on helping refugees.
“The psyche of the Jordanian people, I think it’s gotten to boiling point. It hurt us when it comes to the educational system, our healthcare. Sooner or later, I think the dam is going to burst and I think this week is going to be very important for Jordanians to see, is there going to be help – not only for Syrian refugees, but for their own future as well,” Abdullah told the British news network.