MONTREAL -- Green party Leader Elizabeth May says Stephen Harper's response to the humanitarian crisis in Syria has been weak and that the rules that are in place make it almost impossible to sponsor a refugee.

May made her comments Friday at a news conference following a meeting with Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre, a former Liberal immigration minister.

She says she has worked on trying to get people out of Syria but there are too many obstacles in the way.

Coderre said Montreal is ready to welcome Syrian refugees and he's asking the federal government to put a special program in place to bring them to Canada.

He suggested the political parties should put aside election campaigning for a few days and focus on the crisis unfolding overseas.

On Thursday, Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard said the province has accepted 643 Syrians since the beginning of the year and expects 1,900 by the end of 2015.

Couillard said the province is prepared to do more.