James Lewis | Email news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
The violence in Syria has a group of Vancouver residents setting up for a rally this afternoon at the Art Gallery.
Riam El-Safadi, one of about 1,000 Syrian-Canadians living in the Lower Mainland, is calling on the federal government to increase its support for refugees fleeing the violence.
"We need immediate medical relief inside Syria, and that's what's missing right now. We need more tough action."
El-Safadi says he's also worried for his own family’s safety in the country.
"The last time I contacted them, I asked if they would like to leave or evacuate, so at least they would be in a safe area. They told me we will meet in heaven."
About 20,000 civilians have been reported dead in the 18 months of Syria's civil unrest.