DETROIT (AP) -- Michigan's Republican governor, who has bucked many party leaders for welcoming Syrian refugees, is putting efforts on hold following the deadly attacks in Paris.
Gov. Rick Snyder said in a statement Sunday that the state is postponing efforts to accept refugees until federal officials fully review security clearances and procedures.
Snyder says Michigan is "proud of our rich history of immigration" but that Michigan's "priority is protecting the safety of our residents."
Now, we have a response from the Chaldean community.
Martin Manna of the Chaldean American Chamber of Commerce says, "I understand the governor's decision to be cautious. I'm also concerned about this refugee phobia they maybe created."
"In the Chaldean community for example, 30,000 refugees have come here since 2007. Michigan has always been a welcoming state for refugees," said Manna.
Manna said already existing policies and procedures are strong enough to catch a terrorist. "I believe there is already a federal process in place that fits all those that come here," said Manna.
Manna hopes a long term solution will be found soon.
"I'm just concerned again that many in our community are dealing with religious persecution and extremism and are leaving the Middle East because they've been persecuted as Christians," said Manna. "I hope they're not forbidden from coming in reuniting with their families here in Michigan."
Several GOP candidates have criticized the Obama administration's plans to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees and urge much greater scrutiny.
Officials say Friday's gun and bomb attacks killed 129 people. One of the attackers had a Syrian passport, but it wasn't clear whether the passport was fake or real.