European countries should pay attention to refugees: JolieJune 20th, 2009 - 12:31 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, June 20 (IANS) Hollywood beauty Angelina Jolie, who along with her superstar partner Brad Pitt, has donated $1 million to help refugees and displaced people in Pakistan, feels European countries should take up the cause of aiding homeless people across the world.
The Oscar-winning actress, who is a goodwill ambassador for the UN refugee agency UNHCR, says she is shocked that it is only the US that has given large amounts of aid, close to $300 million, for the refugee crisis.
“I think they (European countries) should pay attention to what’s happening. I’m not a political person. But I think it doesn’t take much to understand that this is the frontline of us fighting against extremists where all that we hold dear and all that we value is really on the line,” Jolie told CNN International’s Anderson Cooper in an interview.
“I think at least what we can be doing is assisting the humanitarian crisis and assisting the people and the desperate families and the children. And I think all countries have a responsibility to do that. And they certainly are able to. And I think more should step in,” she said on the occasion of World Refugee Day Saturday.
Considered to be one of the largest mass movements, around three million people in Pakistan have fled the fighting in the country’s northwest.
Jolie, a mother-of-six, has been backing refugees since 2001.
The 34-year-old also wants her kids to visit refugee camps and impoverished countries.
“Some of my kids are from countries that have seen conflict… I usually just explain to them that there are other families in the world that aren’t as fortunate as ours and other kids… And they’re not as fortunate as we are.
“I tell them that it’s important for all of us to do what we can and then go to these places and understand what’s happening. Hopefully, I’ll take them to as many countries as I can and raise them with an education of the world…
“I think by witnessing them, by meeting them, by making friends with these type of people and these type of children, it will make my children better people as they get older,” she added.
Jolie and Pitt’s family includes adopted kids Maddox Chivan, 6 (Cambodia), Zahara Marley, 3 (Ethiopia), Pax Thien, 4 (Vietnam), and biological children Shiloh Nouvel, 3, and twins Knox Leon and Vivienne Marcheline born last year.
The actress confessed to being influenced by a 15-year-old boy “who had been shot in the back and paralyzed” and “passed away”.
“He taught me a lot about just the strength and spirit. I think of him and I can’t complain about anything. I can’t do anything but be grateful for what I have because he was grateful and he had nothing and had suffered everything. There are many and there are millions like him,” she said.
Asked if she was planning to expand her brood, she said: “Always. We love children… we want a big family. So we never say no.”
The interview was aired Friday on the show “Anderson Cooper 360″ on CNN International.
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Tags: anderson cooper, angelina jolie, brad pitt, cnn, cnn international, european countries, extremists, goodwill ambassador, hollywood beauty, homeless people, humanitarian crisis, mass movements, New Delhi, political person, refugee agency, refugee camps, refugee crisis, refugees, unhcr, world refugee day