Ben Carson, a leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, visited a refugee camp in Jordan, where he said Syrian refugees should remain. After comparing Syrian refugees to rabid dogs just a week ago, Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson – a neurosurgeon turned conservative Christian evangelist – significantly softened his tone Saturday after meeting with refugees in Jordan, TelesurTV reported. “Today I listened to the life struggles of many Syrians who were forced to flee their home,” Carson said in a statement issued from Amman, Jordan. “I saw pain on the faces of mothers and children.” The world, said Carson, “could be doing so much more.” But so far as the United States is concerned, that means “logistical help and financial support” – to keep Syrians over there, in countries like Jordan and Turkey and Lebanon, not resettling them in North America. “We must keep their hope alive,” said Carson. “Until it is safe for them to return home, Jordan is a safe place for them to wait.” In addition to killing more than 250,000 people, the war that has raged in Syria has produced the worst refugee crisis since World War II, with more than 4.2 million people fleeing the country since 2011 and another 7 million displaced within it. Jordan is home to around 1.4 million refugees from Syria. Turkey hosts 2.2 million refugees and Lebanon another 1.2 million. Many of those refugees live in squalid camps run by the United Nations, which in 2015 experienced a US$900 million funding shortfall. Denied the ability to legally work, and UN donors failing to provide, hundreds of thousands of refugees have chosen to make the dangerous trip to Europe, with more than 3,400 this year drowning along the way, 400 in October alone. Thus far, the United States has accepted 1,900 refugees, though the Obama administration has pledged to allow as many as 10,000 to resettle in 2016. After the terrorist attacks in Paris, however – carried out by citizens of France, not refugees from Syria – the U.S. Congress voted to block the resettlement of refugees more than half the governors in the U.S. said they would refuse to allow Syrians to be resettled within their states. While Carson shares those governors’ opposition to resettling Syrians in the U.S., his comments on Saturday were in stark contrast to those of his fellow Republicans running for the party’s presidential nomination, with billionaire Donald Trump and Texas Senator Ted Cruz both suggesting refugees are in fact sleeper-cell agents for the ISIS. Carson’s remarks were also in stark contrast to his earlier rhetoric. On Nov. 20, while on the campaign trail, Carson said refugees posed a security threat. “If there is a rabid dog running around your neighborhood,” he said, “you’re probably not going to assume something good about that dog.”