The Canadian Press

Regina: The head of an Islamic social services group says the Saskatchewan premier’s call to suspend a plan to bring in 25,000 Syrian refugees by year’s end is a knee-jerk reaction.

Shahina Siddiqui, president of the Islamic Social Services Association, says the suggestion by Brad Wall on Monday was disappointing and irresponsible.

Wall said he’s worried that fast-tracking refugee claims could undermine the screening process and he urged the federal government to re-evaluate the deadline.

The premier said Canada should take in refugees, but security should be the foremost concern for the provincial and federal governments.

Siddiqui notes that Wall didn’t raise the concerns before gunmen and suicide bombers killed at least 129 people in Paris on Friday night.

She says many of those coming to Canada are children or the elderly, who are coming for sanctuary and it’s not fair to cast suspicion over all refugees.

“I want to know what evidence he is basing it on and why suddenly we are questioning our refugee and immigration process and personnel when we never did before,” Siddiqui said in a phone interview from Winnipeg.