- Associated Press - Wednesday, December 16, 2015

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - The U.S. attorney for Kansas has issued a statement criticizing efforts to bar Syrian refugees from entering the country, and discouraging discriminatory acts against Muslims in the wake of terrorist attacks in Paris.

The Wichita Eagle (http://bit.ly/1NpAs7K ) reports that U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom said Tuesday that decisions regarding the resettlement of refugees are part of the federal government’s authority over immigration.

Several governors, including Gov. Sam Brownback, have spoken out against letting Syrian refugees into the United States, citing that terrorists could enter the country under the guise of being a refugee.

Brownback signed an executive order in November directing that no state agency or organization that receives state money help or participate in the relocation of Syrian refugees.

Brownback spokeswoman Eileen Hawley said that the refugee resettlement program is a collaboration between the state and federal government.

“It is well within the Governor’s authority to direct how state agencies and groups receiving state funding use those funds,” Hawley said.

In his statement, Grissom says fear of terrorism is no reason for backlash against Muslims in America. He also says the Department of Justice will act to enforce hate crime laws.

“We always have a concern when we see rhetoric cross the line and become threats or violence,” he said. “It is the responsibility of all Americans of every faith to reject discrimination.”

Grissom was appointed the U.S. attorney for Kansas by President Barack Obama in 2010.

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Information from: The Wichita (Kan.) Eagle, http://www.kansas.com

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