Pope Francis and the two Eastern Orthodox leaders are visiting Greece's Moria hotspot refugee camp on Lesbos island on Saturday. The island is a gateway to Europe for many of those fleeing war and poverty in North Africa and Middle East.
"The tragedy of forced migration and displacement affects millions, and is fundamentally a crisis of humanity, calling for a response of solidarity, compassion, generosity and an immediate practical commitment of resources… Together we solemnly plead for an end to war and violence in the Middle East, a just and lasting peace and the honourable return of those forced to abandon their homes," the three religious leaders said in a joint declaration.
The declaration called on countries and religious communities to extend asylum to those in need for as long as required while conflicts across the Middle East and North Africa persist.
Europe has been beset by a massive refugee crisis, with hundreds of thousands of undocumented migrants fleeing their home countries in the Middle East and North Africa to escape violence and poverty. More than 1.8 million migrants entered the European Union in 2015, according to the EU border management agency Frontex.