The first charter flight bringing Syrian refugees to the UK has touched down at Glasgow Airport.
A plane, believed to be carrying about 100 people from camps surrounding the war-torn Middle East state, landed at around 3.40pm on Tuesday.
Several more special flights will arrive at airports around Britain in the coming months as part of a programme to take 20,000 refugees.
The arrivals come after it emerged that at least one of the attackers in the Paris atrocity is believed to have entered Europe through Greece posing as a refugee from Syria.
At the weekend, Home Secretary Theresa May said those who arrive in the UK from the region will have been thoroughly screened to ensure they do not pose a terrorist threat.
She said multiple checks are in place for those earmarked for relocation in Britain.
“There are two levels of screening that take place,” she told BBC1’s Andrew Marr Show.
“First of all, we are taking people directly from the camps. We are working with UNHCR – UNHCR take biometrics, they look at documents, they interview people, they do their own process of screening against issues like war crimes and serious criminality.
“Then there is a further check that is done once people are referred to the UK. The Home Office then undertakes further checks, further biometrics are taken.”
A “steady stream” of refugees have already come to the UK since the scheme was announced in September but the start of special charter flights is described as a “step change”.
New arrivals will be given a five-year visa allowing them to remain in the country, after which they will be able to apply for leave to remain.
Downing Street refused to specify how many refugees were arriving today but said they had undergone “rigorous” security checks before boarding the plane.
A spokesman said it would be “reasonable to assume” the refugees would go to areas within a “reasonable radius” of Glasgow.
John Wilkes, chief executive of the Scottish Refugee Council (SRC), said people on the charter flight which arrived today will be experiencing a range of emotions, from apprehension to relief and hope.
“I think for people on the flight this is a really significant day for them because for many of them they will have been in the camps around Syria for months or years, experiencing all the hardships having fled horrific situations in Syria,” he said.
“I suspect for many of them there will be a mixture of feelings, including apprehension about where they are coming.
“They’re obviously arriving in winter so that might be a bit of a shock. But I think the overriding sense will be one of relief and also one of hope in terms of having the chance to build a new life in the safety and security of Scotland.”
Mr Wilkes said the SRC has received nearly 2,000 offers of help from individuals around Scotland offering to assist the refugees.
He said: “I think what they will get from the communities is a very, very warm and positive welcome.
“Certainly the local authorities will have prepared the neighbourhoods the individuals and families are coming to.
“There’s a lot of co-ordination, a lot of effort from all sorts of agencies, including ours, in terms of providing the best possible welcome we can.
“I think the general mood in the majority of the population is that Scotland and the UK are doing a good thing, that we’re playing our part in the world.
“Clearly that’s not the view that everybody will share. I think there are segments of the population that are more apprehensive.
“Then there’s the issue that people don’t fully understand who these people might be. It’s important that people get real hard information about who these people are, where they’ve come from and the traumas they’ve faced.”