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UN Migration Agency Launches Integrated Rural Development Project for Internally Displaced Communities in Azerbaijan

IOM - News - Mar, 10/30/2018 - 15:48

Baku – Yesterday (29/10) in Baku, IOM, the UN Migration Agency, officially launched the “Integrated Rural Development for Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) Communities in Azerbaijan through Revitalization of the Kahriz Water Supply System” project, financed by the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA).

The four-year project aims to provide safe and consistent water supplies for over 8,000 families in eight districts through the renovation of 40 kahrizes – a traditional, sustainable water supply system. Building upon IOM’s successful past experiences and unique expertise, the project’s activities will not be limited to the rehabilitation of kahrizes, but will also support the Government of Azerbaijan to establish a national master plan for kahriz revitalization; strengthen the local capacity of kahriz engineers and kankans (kahriz technicians); and support small business start-ups run by IDPs – especially women IDPs – through assistance with the creation of micro and small enterprises. IOM’s intervention strategy will put women at the centre of the project’s focus as primary beneficiaries and thus managers of water supplies.

“While the environment has always had an impact on people’s mobility and locations where populations concentrate, we are only now beginning to better understand the complex relationship that exists between the environment, climate change, and migration. As a pioneer of kahriz rehabilitation in Azerbaijan, we are thrilled to be able to continue our work in this field and to benefit thousands of rural families across Azerbaijan,” said Serhan Aktoprak, IOM Azerbaijan Chief of Mission.

“People should be the centre of our development work. Economic and social progress should be achieved for the prosperity of humanity. Peace should be in place and sustained in pursuing this prosperity,” added Kumok Park, Country Director of KOICA Azerbaijan. “The Kahriz project is perfectly in line with the KOICA’s 3P (People, Prosperity and Peace) philosophies and I am pleased that KOICA could support this project, working together with IOM.”

This project will also contribute to Azerbaijan’s efforts to follow through on the principles of the upcoming Global Compact on Migration (GCM) and achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through:

  • Provision of water for domestic and agricultural needs which has a direct impact on poverty reduction and food security – SDG 1.
  • Empowering and involving women the process, increasing their role in the community leadership – SDG 5.
  • Rehabilitation of eco-friendly and sustainable water supply systems, kahrizes and enhanced access to safe drinking water – SDG 6.

For more information please contact Hwahyun Kim at IOM Azerbaijan, Tel: +994 (0)12 465 9071 (Ext. 28), Email: hwakim@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 30, 2018 - 15:46Image: Region-Country: AzerbaijanDefault: Multimedia: 

Serhan Aktoprak, Chief of Mission in IOM Azerbaijan, delivering a keynote speech during the official launch of the project. Photo: IOM 2018 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration, UNAOC Celebrate 10th Anniversary of PLURAL+, 2018 Award Winners in New York

IOM - News - Mar, 10/30/2018 - 15:45

New York – On 19 November young media makers from around the world will be invited to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival, as well as the 2018 Awards Ceremony, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. A second event will be held at the Paley Center for Media on 21 November, where all the award-winning videos will be screened followed by conversations about migration, inclusion and diversity.

PLURAL+ is a Youth Video Festival focused on migration. For ten years, it has provided a platform for young people to express their views on diversity, social inclusion and prevention of xenophobia as seen through their camera lens. The submissions are inspiring and moving; in many cases they challenge the negative narratives and false perceptions surrounding migration.

“Congratulations to the winners of PLURAL+2018! For ten years, PLURAL+ has been helping young people express themselves on the universal reality of migration in entertaining and constructive ways,” said IOM Director General António Vitorino. “This year we are very proud to see more inclusive, independent young voices telling inspiring stories that will spark conversations and help stimulate change.”

“The positive messages reflected in the PLURAL+ videos today are even more relevant and urgent than they were in 2008 when we started the festival,” said H.E. Mr. Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, UNAOC’s High Representative. "These youthful and creative voices addressing migration and prevention of xenophobia are energizing forces of empathy. They are powerful narratives that counterbalance the polarizing stories and cultural stereotypes that are often found in the media.”

The three winners of the PLURAL+2018 International Jury Awards are:

  • BE THERE (India) by Mohd Ayaan, Gaurika, Anshika, Aadhya, Nitya, Divit and students of the CHIHN programme at the Tagore International School (age group up to 12 years).
  • FUTURE NEWS (Spain) by Leo Humphreys, Ignacio Nieto, Lola Parrilla, Claudia Mate, Kique Parrilla and a group of students from Taller Telekids (age group 13-17 years).
  • FALSE HOPE (Philippines) by Al-jhun Romel Virgo, Ella Mae Gonzales, Francis Atendido, Angelikka Eden García, Princess Jazmine García and Angela Given Formanes (age group 18-25 years).

The ceremony will also honour the PLURAL+ Special Award for the Prevention of Xenophobia:

  • I AM NOT DANGEROUS (Afghanistan/Greece) produced and directed by Fridoon Joinda, an Afghan refugee living in Greece.

They were selected out of more than 370 videos from 72 countries worldwide. Videos receiving PLURAL+ partner awards will also be celebrated. This year’s winning videos come from:  Australia, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Brazil, Czechia, Egypt, Greece, Guinea Bissau, India, Indonesia, the Islamic Republic of Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Lebanon, Mexico, Philippines, Portugal, Spain, UK, USA, Zimbabwe. Many of the video makers will attend the ceremony in New York.

The PLURAL+ 2018 Awards Ceremony will be a Gala Dinner to celebrate the festival’s 10-year anniversary, as part of the UNAOC’s 8th Global Forum. The International Jury and the Prevention of Xenophobia prize-winning videos will be screened, along with a video compilation of all other winning videos, and a PLURAL+ retrospective.

The Gala Dinner on 19 November is by invitation only, while the 21 November event is open to the public. It will take place at 8.30am at the Paley Media Center for Media (25 West 52nd Street) in New York City. RSVP

For more information on the PLURAL+ Youth Video Festival and to register, please visit www.pluralplus.unaoc.org  

For more information please contact:

Rahma Gamil Soliman at IOM New York, Tel: +1 (917) 515-7454, Email: rsoliman@iom.int

Jordi Torrent at UNAOC, Tel: +1 (929) 274-6217, Email: jordit@unops.org

 

 

 

 

 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 30, 2018 - 15:41Image: Region-Country: United States of AmericaDefault: Multimedia: 

Filmmakers of "Child of All Nations" and winners of PLURAL+ International Jury Award (age category 18-25). UN Headquarters, New York © Caroline Bizatto / IOM 2017 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM, UN Global Compact Launch Report on Migrants Access to Labour Market

IOM - News - Mar, 10/30/2018 - 15:39

Brasilia – IOM, the UN Migration Agency and the Brazilian Network of the United Nations Global Compact have recently launched a new report addressing international migrants’ access to the labour market in Brazil.

After consulting with executives of 79 companies of the Brazilian Network of the UN Global Compact, a team of experts has systematized the main obstacles to migrants’ integration in the local market, focusing on the companies’ human resources and social responsibility policies. Such obstacles include the availability of information, difficulties to advertise opportunities among the migrants’ community, lack of communication skills and problems with documentation.

The report highlights five key areas of opportunity for companies: 1) The improvement of recruitment systems to facilitate migrants’ access to job opportunities; 2) The possibility of public companies to include migrants in their service providers contracts; 3) The establishment of internship programmes; 4) Brand reputation improvement; and  5) The inclusion of migrants in social responsibility programmes that already exist, focusing other groups.

According to IOM Brazil Chief of Mission, Stéphane Rostiaux, “The research shows the private sector in Brazil is mostly open to migrants.” He added: “The problem is that, sometimes, human resources departments don’t have all the necessary information to move from intentions to actions.”

The research emphasizes on the special needs of vulnerable migrants and have a special focus into gender issues and points out the need to scale existing corporate good practices to reach more migrants.

Reflecting on the project results, the UN Global Compact Brazil Executive-Secretary, Carlo Pereira, explained: “The research shows that diversity and inclusion are present in the daily routine of companies, which means we improved a lot in the past few years”. He emphasized that companies still have room to do more regarding hiring migrants, and the UN Global Compact has been working in capacity-building efforts, especially with women.

The project’s next step is to use the report conclusions to conduce a series of capacity building workshops with private sector representatives. The research and the workshops are part of the IOM Development Fund project “Improving legal assistance to migrants in Brazil and promoting their access to labor markets.”

In 2015, more than 700,000 migrants lived in Brazil, but little to no specific corporate policies are designed to address this population.

The UN Global Compact is a voluntary initiative based on companies’ CEO commitments to implement universal sustainability principles and to take steps to support UN goals. IOM Brazil is working with the UN Global Compact Brazil Network since 2016 in actions to support the integration of migrants in the marketplace.

Access the report here (in Portuguese): http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11788/2089

For more info please contact IOM Brazil, Marcelo Torelly, Tel: +5561 3038 9065, Email: mtorelly@iom.int

Brasilia – IOM, the UN Migration Agency and the Brazilian Network of the United Nations Global Compact have recently launched a new report addressing international migrants’ access to the labour market in Brazil.

After consulting with executives of 79 companies of the Brazilian Network of the UN Global Compact, a team of experts has systematized the main obstacles to migrants’ integration in the local market, focusing on the companies’ human resources and social responsibility policies. Such obstacles include the availability of information, difficulties to advertise opportunities among the migrants’ community, lack of communication skills and problems with documentation.

The report highlights five key areas of opportunity for companies: 1) The improvement of recruitment systems to facilitate migrants’ access to job opportunities; 2) The possibility of public companies to include migrants in their service providers contracts; 3) The establishment of internship programmes; 4) Brand reputation improvement; and  5) The inclusion of migrants in social responsibility programmes that already exist, focusing other groups.

According to IOM Brazil Chief of Mission, Stéphane Rostiaux, “The research shows the private sector in Brazil is mostly open to migrants.” He added: “The problem is that, sometimes, human resources departments don’t have all the necessary information to move from intentions to actions.”

The research emphasizes on the special needs of vulnerable migrants and have a special focus into gender issues and points out the need to scale existing corporate good practices to reach more migrants.

Reflecting on the project results, the UN Global Compact Brazil Executive-Secretary, Carlo Pereira, explained: “The research shows that diversity and inclusion are present in the daily routine of companies, which means we improved a lot in the past few years”. He emphasized that companies still have room to do more regarding hiring migrants, and the UN Global Compact has been working in capacity-building efforts, especially with women.

The project’s next step is to use the report conclusions to conduce a series of capacity building workshops with private sector representatives. The research and the workshops are part of the IOM Development Fund project “Improving legal assistance to migrants in Brazil and promoting their access to labor markets.”

In 2015, more than 700,000 migrants lived in Brazil, but little to no specific corporate policies are designed to address this population.

The UN Global Compact is a voluntary initiative based on companies’ CEO commitments to implement universal sustainability principles and to take steps to support UN goals. IOM Brazil is working with the UN Global Compact Brazil Network since 2016 in actions to support the integration of migrants in the marketplace.

Access the report here (in Portuguese): http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11788/2089

For more info please contact IOM Brazil, Marcelo Torelly, Tel: +5561 3038 9065, Email: mtorelly@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 30, 2018 - 15:20Image: Region-Country: BrazilDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Myanmar Migrant Workers Benefit from Migration, Need More Protection: IOM Survey

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:47

Bangkok – Myanmar nationals benefit from labour migration to Thailand but need more protection to reduce their vulnerability to abuse and exploitation, according to preliminary findings from a flow monitoring survey conducted by IOM, the UN Migration Agency, on the Thai-Myanmar border.

Between June and August 2018 IOM surveyed 4,130 incoming and returning Myanmar migrant workers at six locations in Mae Sot and Phop Phra in Thailand’s north-western Tak province.

The survey is part of a larger, year-long assessment to obtain data on the flow of migrants from Myanmar to Thailand using IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) – a set of tools and methodologies that collect primary data.

The information collected is expected to help identify migration patterns, the common challenges Myanmar migrants face, and how to better assist the most vulnerable.

Each migrant was asked a series of questions related to five thematic areas – socio-demographic and economic profiles, drivers of migration, level of preparedness for migration, vulnerabilities and return intentions.

The survey sheds light on the benefits Myanmar migrants experience by migrating to Thailand, as well as the challenges they face.

One key takeaway was that almost two thirds of those returning to Myanmar surveyed reported that working in Thailand has improved their financial situation.

But findings also indicate vulnerabilities that may expose migrant workers to abuse and exploitation. While 88 per cent of returning migrants confirmed that their expected wage and actual wage they received matched, half were paid below the median minimum wage of THB 318 (USD 9.66) per day.

In addition, incoming migrants tend to underestimate the potential for problems when migrating. When asked about their expectations at the workplace, only five per cent of respondents anticipated facing difficulties. In contrast, 20 percent of returning migrants reported having faced at least one issue or challenge.

Common grievances cited included delays in payment, withheld wages, long working hours and psychological stress.  Less than half of all respondents were able to identify support mechanisms to turn to, such as NGOs or consular officials, in the event that they needed assistance.

The findings also indicate that movements between the two countries are cyclical in nature. Two thirds of all respondents indicated that they had previously worked in Thailand, while 41 per cent of returning migrants indicated an intention to migrate to Thailand again.

Myanmar migrant workers also prefer to arrange a job prior to arrival and stay in Thailand for at least one year. The manufacturing, construction, hospitality and food and beverage industries were the most common employment sectors.

While all 76 provinces in Thailand were indicated as locations of employment, Bangkok was the most popular destination for migrants coming into Thailand through crossing points in Mae Sot and Phop Phra. This was followed by the provinces of Tak, Chonburi, Phuket and Samut Sakhon.

“This assessment provides us with more information on the Myanmar migrant population in Thailand which can be used by IOM, governments and other actors for improved advocacy and protection, as well as enable the delivery of more targeted assistance,” said Nathalie Hanley, Head of IOM Thailand’s Migrant Assistance Unit. “The survey data, for example, clearly identifies the employment sectors least likely to pay salaries equivalent to the minimum wage - agriculture, domestic work and construction.”

Surveying in Tak province is expected to continue until mid-December 2018. The assessment will subsequently be expanded to cover cross-border movements of Cambodian and Lao migrant workers in and out of Thailand.

The surveys are part of IOM’s Asia Regional Migration Program – a regional migration management project funded by the US State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM).

Flow Monitoring Surveys: Insights into the Profiles and Vulnerabilities of Myanmar Migrants to Thailand can be downloaded in English from: http://www.globaldtm.info/thailand-flow-monitoring-surveys-insights-into-the-profiles-and-vulnerabilities-of-myanmar-migrants-to-thailand-september-2018/

For more information, please contact IOM Thailand. Nathalie Hanley, Email: nhanley@iom.int, Tel: +66 2 343 9337 or Michelle Münstermann, Email: mmunstermann@iom.int, Tel: +66 2 343 9565.

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:46Image: Region-Country: ThailandDefault: Multimedia: 

Migrant workers cross the Moei River to enter Thailand from Myanmar. Photo: Visarut Sankham / IOM 2018. 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Launches Updated Counter Trafficking Data Portal with New Statistics

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:46

Geneva – A new version of the Counter Trafficking Data Collaborative (CTDC) has been released, now featuring data on over 90,000 cases of human trafficking and new data visualization tools.

CTDC is the world’s first global data portal on human trafficking, with primary data contributed by organizations around the world, bringing together knowledge and diffusing data standards across the counter-trafficking movement.

For the first time, CTDC facilitates unparalleled access to the largest dataset of its kind in the world, providing a deeper understanding of human trafficking both through the visualisations on the site and through the publicly available downloadable data file.

Analysis published so far on CTDC has revealed new insights into themes such as the main industry sectors where trafficking occurs, victims’ geographical regions of origin and exploitation, trafficking routes and special focus areas such as kidnapping and recruitment. Nearly half of victims accounted for in the CTDC dataset are trafficked into labour exploitation, with most being exploited in the construction, agriculture, manufacturing, domestic work and hospitality sectors. Sexual exploitation is the most common type of exploitation among victims, accounting for just over half of adults and more than 70 per cent of children.

New analysis also focuses on specific groups within the dataset: victims who are kidnapped into trafficking are more likely to have family or friends involved in perpetrating trafficking compared to the rest of the dataset, and 80 per cent are women. Women are almost four times more likely to be recruited by their intimate partners, and children are more likely than adults to be recruited by their family members.

“The availability of this type of data is crucial for building the evidence base for counter-trafficking policy and interventions,” said Anh Nguyen, Head of IOM’s Migrant Protection and Assistance Division. “As the world’s only source of disaggregated data on victims of human trafficking, our hope is that CTDC will make a direct contribution to the objectives of the Global Compact for Migration.”

In adopting the draft of the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), States have specifically committed to “collect and utilize accurate and disaggregated data as a basis for evidence-based policies” (Objective 1) and “prevent, combat and eradicate trafficking in persons in the context of international migration” (Objective 10).

With current data from IOM, the UN Migration Agency; Polaris; and Liberty Asia, CTDC continues to expand as new data is contributed. The new version of the site features data on individuals representing 169 different nationalities trafficked in 172 countries, displayed through interactive dashboards and visualizations.

New features also include an interactive map with multiple layers, including a timeline of human trafficking cases, key trafficking corridors between countries, and information on human trafficking below the country level. Further data is to be contributed by other counter-trafficking partner organizations around the world in the coming months.

To access CTDC please click here. Data on the site are regularly updated so charts and data visualizations may not exactly match statistics in written analysis. 

More information on IOM can be found here
More information on Polaris can be found here.  
More information on Liberty Asia can be found here.

CTDC is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Department of State. The contents are the responsibility of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of State or the United States Government.  

For more information on CTDC, please contact Harry Cook at IOM HQ, Tel: +41227179111, Email: hcook@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:46Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Multimedia: 

CTDC is the world’s first counter-trafficking data portal contains data on over 90,000 cases from 169 countries. One in every five individuals in the dataset is a child. Photo: IOM

CTDC is the world’s first counter-trafficking data portal contains data on over 90,000 cases from 169 countries. One in every five individuals in the dataset is a child. Photo: IOM

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Evidence Shows Primary Healthcare for Migrants is Cost-saving

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:45

Astana – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, pointed out that “leaving no one behind” as formulated in the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals does not necessarily mean a greater burden to health budgets.

During the side-event at the Global Conference on Primary Health Care held in Astana, Kazakhstan, yesterday (25/10), Jacqueline Weekers, IOM’s Migration Health Division Director noted that “High costs are often cited by governments as the main reason to not include migrants in health systems. Meanwhile, migrants contribute more in taxes than they receive in benefits, send remittances to home communities and fill labour market gaps in host societies. Equitable access for migrants to low cost primary health care can reduce health expenditures, improve social cohesion and enable migrants to contribute substantially towards the development.”

Weekers opened the experts’ forum Primary Health Care for Migrants – the Economic Argument, presenting cutting-edge research on experiences both in Europe and Asia on the cost of excluding migrants and asylum seekers from healthcare.

The panel discussion was co-chaired by Santino Severoni, Public Health and Migration Coordinator at the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe and Lyazat Aktaeva, Vice Minister of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

Both key note speakers – Ursula Trummer, Head of the Center for Health and Migration and Kai Hong Phua, Professor at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy – emphasized that the human rights discourse on migrants’ health must be complemented with an economic optimization model.

“Adding the economic perspective can provide the costs and benefits in order to arrive at a balanced consensus,” said Hong Phua. “The necessity of migrant workers in the economy, of keeping private costs for business firms low and ensuring the welfare of migrant workers justifies economically a fair health care policy for migrants,” he added.

Trummer said: “Different studies on the most vulnerable migrant groups such as asylum seekers and undocumented migrants all come to similar conclusions: It is not cost saving to restrict access to health care. Evidence from our vignette study in Europe shows the potential cost savings of timely treatment in primary care of 49 per cent to 100 per cent of the costs that occur for treatment of more severe medical conditions in hospital.”

This view was supported by the Ministry of Health of Thailand, which has almost two decades of experience with health insurance both for its migrant workers and their dependents, and the Ministry of Health of Turkey, which is ensuring the coverage of primary health needs of Syrian refugees under temporary protection in the country.

In her remarks, Weekers also referred to the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) – which is scheduled to be adopted by Member States in Marrakesh in December – and provides a unifying framework of common principles and commitments among member states in a world increasingly marked by migration.

“The GCM presents us with a historical opportunity to improve the lives and dignity of migrants as well as the ability of States to manage migration. Health must be there, and it is there, throughout the 23 objectives of the GCM. The implementation of the GCM can work hand in hand with the universal health coverage and the primary health care agenda,” she said.

For more information please contact Joe Lowry at the IOM Regional Office in Vienna, Tel: +436603776404, Email: jlowry@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:45Image: Region-Country: KazakhstanDefault: Multimedia: 

Jacqueline Weekers (3rd from left), IOM Migration Health Division Director and fellow panellists in Astana. Photo: IOM  

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Joins UNCTAD and UNHCR to Publish Entrepreneurship Policy Guide for Migrants and Refugees

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:45

Geneva — The Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees was launched this Wednesday (24/10) during the 2018 World Investment Forum at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland. The guide is the product of intensive work and collaboration between UNCTAD, UNHCR and IOM, the UN Migration Agency.

Drawing on the experience, knowledge and networks of UNCTAD, IOM and UNHCR in the fields of migration and entrepreneurship development this inter-agency document offers practical guidance to policymakers and development partners. It was produced as part of the response to the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, signed at the 71st UN General Assembly in September 2016, and in response to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. Its publication comes just a few weeks before international leaders meet to sign the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in Marrakech, Morocco later this year.

“The creation of economic opportunities for all, with the purpose of leaving no one behind, is a priority of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” noted UNCTAD Deputy Secretary-General Isabelle Durant in a press statement. “One mechanism to achieve this is through the promotion of entrepreneurship.”

This guide argues that entrepreneurship can be an effective way to include migrants and refugees in local economies and enhance their contributions to countries of origin by sharing their knowledge and entrepreneurial spirit, creating new market opportunities, leveraging cross-border networks and generating employment. Policies and programmes play an important role in supporting entrepreneurial activity by (and for) refugees and migrants and in addressing the barriers they face to engaging in economic activity.

“The launch of the Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees can reap huge benefits by bringing together stakeholders working on migration and those dealing with economic development and entrepreneurship,” said Amb. Thompson ahead of the launch.  “I call upon all to unite forces in raising awareness about the positive impact and opportunities migrants offer by promoting transnational entrepreneurial networks and the circulation of skills, knowledge and financial resources across countries of origin and destination.”

The Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees is available here.

For more information, please contact IOM HQ:
Deepali Fernandes, Tel: +41 22 717 9547, Email : dfernandes@iom.int
Vanessa Okoth-Obbo, Tel: +41 22 717 9366, vokoth@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:45Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Multimedia: 

The Policy Guide on Entrepreneurship for Migrants and Refugees offers practical guidance that ensures refugees and migrants can use their skills and abilities to build their livelihoods while contributing to host communities and economies.

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM, EU Support Consultation on Global Compact for Migration in Madagascar

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:44

Antananarivo — Representatives of the Malagasy Government, civil society, the private sector, and United Nations (UN) agencies, gathered this week (23-24/10) in Antananarivo for the first two-day multi-stakeholder consultation on the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration.

Through the two-day consultation, which was co-organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and IOM,  the UN Migration Agency, Malagasy stakeholders with different perspectives and experiences of migration management had the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the content of the Global Compact; to reflect on the priority topics and Global Compact objectives of relevance to the country; and to brainstorm on some of the mechanisms to be put in place to support the Global Compact’s implementation.

In his opening remarks Eric Ratsimbazafy, Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs underlined that “this consultation is a crucial step ahead of the upcoming Intergovernmental Conference in Marrakesh. This provides an opportunity for us as stakeholders, to consider the new global governance architecture around migration, and to take stock of the benefits and challenges that migration may have in the country and on society.”

The finalization of the Global Compact on 13 July 2018 was the culmination of six rounds of inter-governmental negotiations at the UN Headquarters in New York between February and July 2018, which followed the consultation and stocktaking phases that took place between April 2017 and January 2018. The text will be presented at the Intergovernmental Conference to Adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration in Marrakesh on 10-11 December.

The Global Compact is the result of a process that began in September 2016 when the United Nations General Assembly addressed, for the first time at such a high level, the issue of human mobility and its many dimensions.

The Global Compact sets out a range of principles, commitments and understandings among Member States, affecting nearly 260 million international migrants and the communities that host them, including considerations relating to human rights, humanitarian, economic, social, development, climate change and security issues. It provides a blueprint states to better manage migration and cooperate more effectively with one another. It also gives states the space and flexibility to do so on the basis of their own migration realities and capacities.

This consultation was made possible with the support of the European Commission’s Directorate General for International Cooperation and Development (DEVCO).

For more information please contact Daniel Silva y Poveda at IOM Madagascar, Tel: +261.32 56 54 954, Email: dsilva@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:44Image: Region-Country: MadagascarDefault: Multimedia: 

Violet Kakyoma, UN Resident Coordinator in Madagascar addresses participants at the Multi-stakeholders Consultation in Antananarivo. 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Migrant Deaths in Western Mediterranean This Year Double Those Recorded in 2017: UN Migration Agency

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:44

Berlin – IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) team, based at IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) in Berlin, has confirmed that two migrant boats were lost in the Alboran Sea in late August and early September and at least 113 people lost their lives. Since the beginning of the year, 547 people are estimated to have died in these waters, more than double the 224 deaths documented in all of 2017.

On 30 August, a boat carrying 52 migrants, including six women (one of whom was pregnant) disappeared, according to the NGO Alarm Phone. The boat left on 29 August from Nador, Morocco, and both Spanish and Algerian authorities were involved in the unsuccessful search for the lost boat.

Days later, on 3 September, another boat, with 61 migrants on board, went missing in the Alboran Sea after it departed for mainland Spain. The bodies of 13 people were found on the shores of Morocco and Algeria in the following days.

“What’s concerning is that we’ve seen a consistent increase in the number of migrant deaths recorded in the Western Mediterranean each year since IOM began keeping track,” said Frank Laczko, Director of IOM’s Data Analysis Centre. “These numbers, however, tell only a partial story of the tragedy unfolding in the Western Mediterranean. For each person lost at sea, families are left wondering if their loved one is dead or alive.”

The families of the 113 people who disappeared in these two shipwrecks are forced to live in limbo, not knowing the fate of their loved ones. They will have no place to mourn and lay their loved ones to rest.

Unfortunately, deaths in the waters between North Africa and the Spain are not a new phenomenon. The Andalusian Association for Human Rights has documented the deaths of over 6,000 people on this route since 1997.

Laczko noted, “The increase in recorded deaths in 2018 is linked to the increase in attempted sea crossings from North Africa to Spain compared with the past five years, as well as the number of fatalities in each shipwreck.” Of the 547 deaths and disappearances recorded so far in 2018, more than half (289) occurred in seven shipwrecks in which more than 20 people died or were lost at sea. Between 2014 and 2017, two or fewer such incidents were recorded each year.

There are also strong indications that many migrants have been lost without a trace in the Western Mediterranean this year. The remains of more than 60 people have been found on beaches in Spain, Morocco and Algeria in 2018 that are not associated with any known shipwreck.

Furthermore, non-governmental organizations operating in Spain and Morocco have received numerous requests from family members reporting loved ones lost in the Alboran Sea in shipwrecks which cannot be confirmed.

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project collects data on migrant deaths from various sources, including coast guards, non-governmental and civil society organizations, and media reports. However, reports on migrant deaths are scattered and incomplete, and there are no complete data on border deaths released by Spanish or Moroccan authorities.

In general, Missing Migrants Project data on migrant deaths and disappearances are best understood as minimum estimates: the true number of fatalities during migration is likely much higher. This lack of data reinforces the marginality and invisibility of migrant deaths and leads to an environment in which deaths seem to be tolerated as an assumed risk of irregular migration.

For the latest data on migrant deaths on the Western Mediterranean crossing, visit the Missing Migrants Project website here. Raw data can be downloaded from missingmigrants.iom.int/downloads.

For further information please contact Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:43Image: Region-Country: GermanyDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency, Partners Present Research on Modern Day Slavery at UK Event

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:43

London – Prevention, remedy and ultimately the eradication of human trafficking and slavery will require a more nuanced understanding of both the factors that make people vulnerable and the influence of market forces, according to the conclusions of a panel hosted by IOM, the UN Migration Agency, in London on Thursday (25/10). 

“One myth that we must debunk is that slavery is an issue of the past,” said Dipti Pardeshi, IOM UK Chief of Mission.

Pardeshi explained that there are more people in slavery-like conditions now than any time in history. It is not localized to specific regions, countries, states, cities or towns. 

“Unfortunately, human trafficking is everywhere and the only way to eradicate it is through cooperative national and international multi-stakeholder responses,” Pardeshi continued.

Panellists at the event, hosted by IOM’s London office to mark Anti-Slavery Day 2018, agreed that a more nuanced and holistic understanding of the vulnerabilities contributing to human trafficking and the effects of labour conditions was needed for effective action against the phenomenon.   

“In order to prevent human trafficking, we must first better understand what makes people vulnerable to trafficking. The interim findings reveal that people’s families and the households they grew up in can be significant causes of vulnerability to human trafficking,” said Patrick Burland, Senior Project Officer at IOM UK.

At the event, panellists presented their interim findings from two ongoing research projects, including the launch of three reports on research events with local experts that took place in Albania, Viet Nam and Nigeria as part of the project “Vulnerability to human trafficking:  A study of Viet Nam, Albania, Nigeria and the UK”. This is a partnership between IOM UK and the University of Bedfordshire which has interviewed 160 survivors of trafficking and expert stakeholders across the countries. 

A second project explored exploitative conditions in the seafood supply chains of Indonesia, based upon the well-documented exploitation of migrant workers on fishing vessels in South East Asia. Conducted by Coventry University in the UK, and supported by IOM Indonesia, Issara Institute and Universitas Indonesia, the research is expected to produce evidence-driven recommendations for supply chains and governments to better address human trafficking in fisheries.

IOM UK, in partnership with the University of Bedfordshire, expects to present its final conclusions and recommendations for governments and stakeholders in the countries in spring 2019.

“What we see in these interim reports is the result of these events, demonstrating a contextual understanding of the key issues relating to human trafficking within Albania, Viet Nam and Nigeria,” said Patricia Hynes of the University of Bedfordshire.

“We know there are no silver bullets to prevent the invisible crime of human trafficking and doing so will take time and commitment. We found a drive to understand it, to protect people who have experienced it and, encouragingly, to coordinate efforts to achieve this goal,” she added.

For more information please contact Abby Dwommoh at IOM UK, Tel: +44 (0)20 7811 6060, Email: adwommoh@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:43Image: Region-Country: United KingdomDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM UK hosted an Anti-Slavery Day event in London with University of Bedfordshire and Coventry University presenting interim research findings. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Turkey Promotes Unity, Counters Xenophobia During First Public Information Summit

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:43

Gaziantep – Eight years into the Syrian crisis, Turkey continues to be a transit and destination country, hosting three and a half million Syrians within its borders. A majority live in South-eastern Turkey, where IOM, the UN Migration Agency, works to bring Syrian migrant and Turkish host communities together.

At the first IOM Turkey Public Information Summit in Gaziantep this Wednesday (24/10), 40 IOM staff members gathered to learn how strong communications, visibility and storytelling can play a key role in fostering a greater sense of acceptance and integration between the two groups. 

At the Summit, 31 IOM project and senior managers attended workshops on IOM key messages and branding, social media outreach, fundamentals of storytelling and writing, and the IOM Community Response App – delivered by nine IOM Public Information staff from national, regional and headquarter offices.

Participants discussed how IOM staff can better harness the power of the media to shift the narrative on migration in a way that promotes the contributions of migrants and debunks popular myths.

“We see many examples where messages of xenophobia and inaccuracies about migration being fed to the public in the media. If we can instead promote positive stories of migration, then we can diffuse some tensions between migrants and host communities,” said Emrah Özesen, IOM Turkey Multimedia Specialist, during a presentation on the media landscape in Turkey and internationally.

As one of the largest IOM missions in the world, IOM Turkey so far this year has served 150,189 people from both migrant and host communities across 12 provinces through livelihood trainings, community outreach, psychosocial support, and education and health services.

“Promoting integration requires changing narratives and influencing public perception on migration by sharing the stories of migrants with dignity and humanity,” said Lanna Walsh, IOM Turkey Public Information Officer.

Participants shared examples of communications campaigns and initiatives that combat xenophobia and portray crisis-affected populations with dignity, such as the United Nations-led TOGETHER campaign and multimedia content produced by IOM Turkey.

Joe Lowry, Senior Regional Media and Communications Officer, also presented on how IOM Turkey’s messages reinforce global IOM priorities, particularly the Global Compact on Migration (GCM), an international agreement which the United Nations is set to adopt this December at an intergovernmental conference in Morocco.

He emphasized the role of communications in highlighting various objectives the Global Compact on Migration aims to achieve – including providing accurate and timely information to migrants; promoting evidence-based public discourse to shape perceptions of migration; and strengthening international cooperation and global partnerships.

Lowry highlighted the message and vision of IOM’s new Director General António Vitorino, who said, “The GCM will truly be implemented in IOM’s regional and country offices. We will stay true to our nature, remaining close to migrants and providing solutions to the issues they face. As IOM staff, we not only have to implement these solutions, but we must share the many success stories and positive impact of our work.”

IOM Turkey plans to conduct two more Public Information Summits for staff in Ankara and Istanbul in the coming months.

For more information, please contact Lanna Walsh at IOM Turkey, Tel: +90 312 454 3048, Email: lwalsh@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:42Image: Region-Country: TurkeyDefault: Multimedia: 

Nadine Al Lahham, IOM Turkey Communications Assistant, gave a workshop on compelling storytelling at IOM’s Public Information Summit in Gaziantep, Turkey. Photo: IOM/ Emrah Özesen  

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Egypt Celebrates UN Day by Providing Medical Equipment to Ain Shams Specialized Hospital in Cairo

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:42

Cairo – IOM Egypt, this year celebrated United Nations Day by donating medical equipment to the Cairo Ain Shams Specialized Hospital. The donation included one electrocardiography (heart monitor) device and 10 wheelchairs.

The equipment will be used to enhance the hospital’s capacity and ensure higher access to universal health care, leaving no one behind. Through this initial donation, both migrants and Egyptian patients will have better access to health services, in line with President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi’s policy for a diverse and tolerant society.

The donation affirms IOM’s willingness to continue working with the hospital in boosting the Egyptian public health system.

“This is one of the partnerships that IOM would like to establish with the Egyptian health sector to further support the public health policies of the government. It is an honour to be associated with one of the most prestigious health institutes in Egypt. I look forward to further collaborate with the Hospital to help the medical corps to provide adequate services to all patients and to make sure that no one is left behind,” said the IOM Chief of Mission in Egypt, Laurent De Boeck.

Following the donation ceremony, the IOM Medical Team met with Dr. Walid Anwar, Deputy Director for the hospital, to discuss further cooperation and plan a larger support programme to be announced soon with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Arab Republic of Egypt. This initial contribution will be followed by further healthcare training opportunities to provide high quality migrant and Egyptian friendly services.

The initiative is in line with the Government of Egypt’s Sustainable Development Strategy: Egypt vision 2030 for Economic and Human Development; it also works toward the Sustainable Development Goals, especially ‘Goal 3’: to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all ages.

In accordance with the above, 24 October has been celebrated as United Nations Day since 1948. In 1971, the United Nations General Assembly recommended that the day be observed by Member States as a public holiday.

For more information please contact Laurent De Boeck at IOM Egypt, Tel: +201099994835, Email: ldeboeck@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:41Image: Region-Country: EgyptDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM Egypt celebrated the United Nations Day by donating equipment to the Cairo Ain Shams Specialized Hospital. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Trains Nigerian Immigration Officials on Migration Information and Data Analysis System

IOM - News - Ven, 10/26/2018 - 08:41

Moshi – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, supported by its African Capacity Building Centre (ACBC) in Moshi and in collaboration with IOM Abuja, conducted a five-day specialized workshop on IOM's Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) from 22-26 October 2018.

The workshop gathered a total of 25 participants, including 10 immigration officers from the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) and several staff members from IOM Nigeria. The workshop was facilitated by four MIDAS experts from IOM Headquarters.

The objective of the workshop was to strategize on the status of the MIDAS architecture in Nigeria and, given its size and complexity, to carefully describe all next steps required to ensure its required stability and robustness.

MIDAS is a comprehensive Border Management Information System designed to be compliant with international standards and currently implemented in over 20 countries. With the capability to collect, process, store, and analyse traveller information, MIDAS enables governments to more effectively monitor those entering and exiting their territory while providing a sound statistical basis for migration policy-related planning.

The MIDAS system in Nigeria will connect a total of 19 land border posts and five international airports, and it will facilitate foreigner registration in the country – all of which make it one of the biggest MIDAS system architectures in the wold.

The workshop focused on several important aspects: MIDAS System Architecture; MIDAS Database Creation and Management; Network Challenges and Solutions in Nigeria; MIDAS Integration Capacity; MIDAS and Related Systems Web-Service Development and Foreigners Registration System in Nigeria.

It also aimed to improve understanding of all critical requirements of the MIDAS system architecture, database and information management as well as its full functionality, including its readiness to be integrated with other relevant data systems.

Dr. Qasim Sufi, the IOM Chief of Mission in the United Republic of Tanzania, stated that this workshop was an excellent example of a commendable coordination and synergy between IOM and Nigerian Government partners.

Enhanced operational capacity of immigration services will positively contribute to the African Union’s overall endeavour to facilitate free of movement of persons within the continent.

The workshop was held under the projects Enhancing Land and Sea Border Data Systems (ELSBDS) and Enhancing Air Border Data Systems (EABDS).

For more information, please contact:
Damien Thuriaux at IOM HQ, Tel: +41227179808, Email: dthuriaux@iom.int
Ivanka Spadina at IOM Abuja, Tel: +2349062850250, Email: ispadina@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, October 26, 2018 - 14:40Image: Region-Country: NigeriaDefault: Multimedia: 

Participants at the MIDAS workshop for Nigerian Immigration Officials, in Tanzania. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Biometric Registration of Displaced Population in Juba Enhances Accountability in Humanitarian Aid

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:31

Juba – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) team in South Sudan and partners recently concluded a biometric registration exercise which resulted in a total of 32,113 displaced people living in Juba’s two protection of civilian (PoC) sites being registered.

Biometric registration is a widespread practice in South Sudan, which allows for a more accurate picture of the population living in a displacement site and enables agencies to plan assistance in a more targeted and accountable way.

IOM’s biometric registration database in South Sudan includes over 700,000 people. The Organization is working jointly with the UN World Food Programme (WFP) to further expand the use of biometric data to avoid duplication of assistance and to ensure that those receiving aid are indeed the intended beneficiaries.

The new Juba PoC registration numbers show a significant drop (18%) from earlier figures dating back to a previous registration exercise, conducted in October 2016. Almost half of the decrease is due to a recent relocation of 3,379 people conducted from Juba PoC 3 site to a temporary site called Mangateen following intercommunal tensions. The registration data indicated that more than 3,600 individuals left the PoC sites for unknown destinations.

Hundreds of thousands of people sought safety in UN bases after the breakout of conflict and widespread violence in South Sudan in 2013. These areas became known as protection of civilian sites. Established in early 2014, the Juba PoC sites host mainly people displaced from Juba town and locations in Unity.

PoC 1 site remains the smaller of the two PoC sites in Juba, with a total of 7,515 people currently living there, while the PoC 3 site hosts 24,598 individuals. Fifty-five per cent of the overall population are children and youth under the age of 18. Fifty-two per cent of the population are men and boys, whereas 48 per cent are women and girls. The average household size is 3.6 people (excluding 6,105 people, who registered independently rather than as a household unit). Average household sizes may be even higher, as families sometimes split and register as multiple separate households for a variety of reasons.

“The success of this exercise depended greatly on close collaboration between different humanitarian partners and the United Nations Missions in South Sudan (UNMISS),” said Tya Maskun, IOM South Sudan Head of Operations. “This will go a long way to ensure that vulnerable displaced populations get the assistance that they need,” added Maskun.

IOM began the exercise in early September with a two-day temporary registration (T-REG), which enabled the Organization to quickly account for the people residing in the sites. Through fingerprint registration, IOM created a database of those who could take part in the full registration exercise conducted between 14 September and 16 October 2018. The use of T-REG for the initial stage of biometric registration is a new methodology and a marked improvement over previous uses of ink and tokens.

IOM is working with partners to prepare a detailed report analysing trends in displacement at the Juba PoC sites in comparison to findings from the 2016 and 2018 registration exercises. The report will also draw on the findings of a complementary protection assessment undertaken by protection partners during the biometric registration exercise and is expected to be available before the end of the year.  

IOM’s biometric activities in South Sudan are supported by Department for International Development (DFID), the US Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), European Commission Humanitarian Aid (ECHO) and WFP.

As of July 2018, OCHA reported that there were approximately 1.8 million people displaced in South Sudan. IOM continues to coordinate with relief partners to provide multi-sector humanitarian assistance to displaced and conflict-affected people across the country.

For more information, please contact Olivia Headon in Juba, Tel: +211912379843, Email: oheadon@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:30Image: Region-Country: South SudanThemes: Internally Displaced PersonsDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM and partners conduct biometric registration in Juba’s protection of civilians (PoC) sites. Photo: Karki/IOM

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM Remains Committed to Resettlement Despite Decline in 2018

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:30

Geneva – In the first six months of 2018, IOM, the UN Migration Agency, supported the resettlement of 47,197 refugees departing from 106 different countries. The Organization plays a key role in the resettlement process by providing services that prepare refugees to integrate in their new countries.

Lebanon, Turkey and Afghanistan were the top three departure countries for refugees resettled globally. In addition, Syrian, Afghan and Congolese (from the Democratic Republic of the Congo) refugees were among the top three nationalities selected for resettlement. These refugees began new lives in a total of 26 different countries, with the United States, Canada and Sweden as the top three receiving countries.

In cooperation with European governments, IOM also supports the relocation of refugees and migrants who arrived at ports-of-entry in countries like Greece to other receiving European countries. From January to June of this year, IOM relocated 1,595 people to destination countries within Europe.

In comparison with resettlement rates from January to June 2017, the number of refugees resettled in the first half of 2018 has reduced by 40 per cent (from 79,299 to 47,197). Similarly, the relocation of refugees and migrants in Europe has decreased by 88 per cent (from 13,260 to 1,546) in the same reporting period.

While the United States remains the leading recipient of resettled refugees in 2018, it has fallen from admitting 31,808 humanitarian entrants in 2017 to 14,379 persons in the first six months of 2018.

According to UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, as of mid-2018, 68.5 million people worldwide have been forcibly displaced, of which 25.4 million have crossed international borders and are recognised as refugees by UNHCR.

“Resettlement remains a vital international protection tool for some of the world’s most vulnerable populations. It is important for practitioners to support and advocate for resettlement, so these valuable opportunities remain, and policy makers are reminded of this important humanitarian solution,” said Craig Murphy, IOM’s Programme Manager for the Emerging Resettlement Countries Mechanism (ERCM).

Despite its reduction, resettlement offers a crucial multilateral humanitarian solution for refugees. In addition to integration and return, resettlement is one of the three durable solutions available to refugees – and one of the only options for those living in situations of long-term displacement.

However, resettlement as a durable solution is accessible to less than one per cent of the refugee population. IOM, therefore, supports the expansion and improvement of traditional resettlement programmes as well as diversifying complementary pathways of migration for refugees – including family reunification, student visas and scholarships, and labour migration.

“IOM continues to support governments engaged in resettlement as a durable solution for refugees by providing comprehensive care to prepare refugees for their journey, support them during travel and assist with post-arrival integration. This is done through well-developed protocols for health assessments and the development of curriculum and pre-departure orientation courses,” explained Murphy.

Partnerships and close coordination are central to effective resettlement. IOM plans and coordinates with governments to ensure safe, dignified and ultimately successful resettlement. UNHCR undertakes the primary role in identifying refugees considered for resettlement.

This short animated video showcases the resettlement process, from selection to reception, for one refugee family. It highlights the plight of refugees and IOM’s role in essential aspects of resettlement from health and integration, to ensuring safe and dignified movement.

For more information, please contact Craig Murphy at IOM HQ in Geneva, Tel: +41 22 717 9183, Email: cmurphy@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:29Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: ResettlementDefault: Multimedia: 

As part of the pre-departure orientation process, IOM staff members assist a refugee family to try on new shoes in Mae Sot, Thailand. IOM/ 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Somali Mother and Daughter Reunited in Cyprus After Three-Year Separation

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:28

Larnaca – A 29-year-old Somali mother and her 6-year-old daughter were recently reunited after a three-year separation, finally meeting again at Larnaca International Airport on 22 October through the efforts of the IOM missions in Cyprus and Somalia.

Samia's journey to Cyprus was fraught with difficulties, but she has now managed to secure a better future for herself and her daughter.

Upon her arrival in Cyprus, Samia applied for asylum. When this was granted, she applied for family reunification, in order to bring Manar – her only daughter – to Cyprus. Until then, Manar was staying with her grandparents in Mogadishu.

From the moment that Samia requested to bring her daughter to Cyprus, the IOM offices in Somalia and in Cyprus joined forces to assist the anxious mother.  

Prior to Manar’s departure from Somalia, the IOM office in Somalia assisted with the young girl’s flight arrangements and provided her with airport assistance until she reached Cyprus.

Thanks to the support of the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Cyprus and the Civil Registry and Migration Department, Samia was finally able to embrace her daughter after three years of being apart.

“This reunification is the outcome of great coordination between IOM and the Ministry of Interior of the Republic of Cyprus. Samia was separated from her daughter for three years. She missed her daughter very much and was thrilled upon her arrival. IOM, in addition to resettlement support, also offers additional safe and legal pathways for migrants, including the most vulnerable family members of refugees,” said Natasa Xenophontos Koudouna, Head of the IOM office in Cyprus.

This is the first time that IOM Cyprus has assisted a Somali family in this manner, and only the second time in the mission's history that a family reunification has taken place.  

Family reunification accounts for a large share of regular migration in many countries and is a positive means of upholding the right to family life and promoting social integration. The right to family unity is a fundamental human right. 

IOM encourages all EU Member States to consider a programmatic and comprehensive approach to family reunification – first and foremost, of refugees and those holding subsidiary protection status – such as that taken in IOM’s Family Assistance Programme

In addition to IOM’s Family Assistance Programme, IOM offices in the EU, Norway, Switzerland and Iceland during the first half of 2018 have facilitated the family reunification of over 4,800 persons through various activities including, but not limited to, visa application support, consular support and travel assistance.  During this period at least 2,800 persons travelled to be reunited with their relatives in the EU and associated states, through IOM support.  

For more information contact Dimitrios Tsagalas, IOM Cyprus, Tel. +357 22 77 22 56, Email: dtsagalas@iom.int

 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:26Image: Region-Country: CyprusThemes: Family ReunificationDefault: Multimedia: 

Samia reunited with her daughter Manar (6), in Cyprus, after being separated for 3 years. Photo: IOM/Dimitrios Tsagalas

Samia reunited with her daughter Manar (6), in Cyprus, after being separated for 3 years. Photo: IOM/Dimitrios Tsagalas

 

Samia and Manar were reunited through the efforts of the IOM missions in Cyprus and Somalia. Photo: IOM/Dimitrios Tsagalas

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

‘Light on the Move’: IOM Co-Hosts Migration Photography Exhibition in Greece

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:26

Athens — IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is organizing a photo exhibition titled “Light on the move” at Museum of Cycladic Art in Athens, featuring the work of world-renowned photographer Muhammed Muheisen — a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner.

Inspired by Muheisen’s photography on the themes of migration and displacement and drawing from a catalogue that spans over a decade, the pictures in the exhibition depict the everyday life of refugees, migrants and internally displaced people, as well as the challenges they face.

Men, women and children from Syria, Greece, Pakistan, Afghanistan the Netherlands and many other countries, remind visitors that human nature acknowledges no borders and that mankind is present everywhere, regardless of nationality, religion, age or gender; people on the move, carry and share their own light.

“Nobody leaves their home unless they’re forced to leave their home, and that’s what I try to show in my images. For me, it’s a story of the people. We always use the word refugee, but behind the word, [there] are people with dreams, people with stories, people with history and backgrounds,” said Muheisen. “It is not only a picture of a child, it is a message from a child from [one] part of the world to another child from another part of the world. I personally believe that through photography we can make a real difference, big or small, at least we can start somewhere. By portraying them my goal is to carry their voice to the world.”

Muhammed Muheisen is a Jordanian photojournalist, a National Geographic Photographer, founder of the Everyday Refugees Foundation and a Canon brand ambassador. In 2013 he was named Best Photographer of the Year by TIME Magazine.

He has covered major events around the world, in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, Africa and the United States of America and has been documenting the refugee crisis across the Middle East, Asia and Europe for over a decade. This is the first time Muheisen is exhibiting his photographs in Greece, as a generous donation to IOM Greece, one of the basic actors in the field of migration.

The photo exhibition is mainly sponsored by DELTA Company, under its framework of activities which support Greek society and underline its challenges.

For more information please contact Christine Nikolaidou at IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 99 19 040 (Ext. 248) Email: cnikolaidou@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:23Image: Region-Country: GreeceThemes: Internally Displaced PersonsRefugee and Asylum IssuesDefault: Multimedia: 

21-month-old Afghan refugee Anna Rahmoni sleeps under a mosquito net outside her family's tent to escape the heat trapped inside the tent, in Malakasa camp north of the Greek capital. Photo: Muhammed Muheisen

Manar Abdulrazaq, a 12-year-old Syrian refugee from Deir ez-Zor, poses for a picture inside her family's shelter in Elefsina camp Northwest of the Greek capital. "I wish to go back to school, we had to leave our home in Syria after it was destroyed in an airstrike, I still can remember the sound of the fighter jets in the sky, it was so scary." Photo: Muhammed Muheisen

A Syrian refugee woman tends to her daughter while cooking inside her tent in an informal tented settlement on the outskirts of Mafraq, Jordan. Photo by Muhammed Muheisen

19-year-old Syrian refugee Narmeen Zaytoun from Idlib, holds her 23-day-old son Mohammed while walking to her cousin's tent at the informal extension of Moria camp in the Greek Island of Lesbos. "I want what every mother wants, to raise her children in a safe place and wish them to grow up and become something”. Photo: Muhammed Muheisen

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 94,676 in 2018; Deaths Reach 1,857

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:22

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 94,676 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2018 through 21 October, with 45,145 to Spain, the leading destination this year. In fact, since late September’s arrivals were reported, Spain in 2018 has now received via the Mediterranean more irregular migrants than it did throughout all the years 2015, 2016 and 2017 combined.

The region’s total arrivals through the recent weekend compare with 146,898 arrivals across the region through the same period last year, and 324,267 at this point in 2016.

Spain, with 46 per cent of all arrivals through the year, continues to receive seaborne migrants in October at a volume – about 370 daily – that amounts to eight and a half times that of arrivals to Italy and almost three times that of Greece (see chart below).

Italy’s arrivals through late October remain extremely low, at fewer than 1,000 for each of the past two months, although with 10 days remaining to be counted in October, totals this month may again cross the 1,000-person threshold.

IOM Rome’s Flavio Di Giacomo reported Monday that Ministry of Interior figures released by Italian authorities through October 19 indicate barely half of all sea arrivals this year to Italy by irregular migrants originated in Libya. Di Giacomo said Ministry of Interior numbers through last Monday were 12,465, out just under 22,000 total sea arrivals thus far in 2018. That amounts to 57 per cent of migrant voyages, while around 43 per cent are voyages originating in Tunisia, Algeria and other countries on the Mediterranean coast, including Turkey and Greece.

The Libya-to-Italy volume – averaging roughly 43 men, women and children daily through the year – marks a stunning drop in irregular migrant traffic into Italy since mid-summer 2017, when arrival numbers began dropping sharply (see chart below).  Volume in 2014 came to almost 450 per day; in 2015 around 410 per day; in 2016 485/day and last year 320/day.

Significantly, IOM Libya on Sunday reported that the total number of vulnerable migrants going home in 2018 on Voluntary Humanitarian Return (VHR) flights from Tripoli and other Libyan cities has now surpassed 13,000 – to 32 separate countries of origin – marking the first time on record, IOM has sent back from Libya more men, women and children than the total number of irregular migrants sailing to Italy from that country.

IOM Libya said the similarity in numbers does not indicate that every migrant traveling under the VHR programme is a migrant who would otherwise have sailed to Italy. IOM Libya noted increased patrolling by Libyan Coast Guard units who intercept migrants offshore and return them to Libya has had an impact on the number of irregular voyages completed to Italy this year.

The Mediterranean remains a lethal passage for migrants, despite the sharp drop in traffic on the deadly central Mediterranean route. IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) has documented through 21 October the deaths of 1,857 irregular migrants, over two-thirds of those fatalities in the waters between North Africa and Sicily.

Most recently, in the Western Mediterranean, the body of a woman was recovered on a beach 40km west of Nador, Morocco, on 20 October.  On Monday (22 October) a tragic shipwreck in the Aegean Sea claimed the lives of two children, when a boat carrying 34 people capsized just 50 meters off the coast of Bodrum, Turkey. Seventeen people were rescued from the water by the Turkish Coast Guard, while another 17 made it to shore. Tragically, two of those survivors – both children – died at the hospital, one a seven-year-old girl. Since the beginning of the year, the Missing Migrants Project has documented the deaths of 42 children on the Eastern Mediterranean route, which represent 27 per cent of the total number of deaths recorded on this route.

Missing Migrants also reported two people died over the weekend when trying to jump over a border fence between Morocco’s province of Nador and the Spanish enclave of Melilla. Razor wire topping the six-meter border fence caused injuries to several people who were attempting to jump over the fence on Sunday, 21 October. The body of a young man from Sub-Saharan Africa was found on the Spanish side of the border, while local NGOs reported that another man died from his injuries at the hospital in Nador.

IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported Monday that total arrivals at sea in 2018 have reached 45,145 men, women and children who have been rescued in Western Mediterranean waters through 21 October. With 10 days left for counting, October is likely to see as many as 10,000 irregular arrivals for the month, which would be the busiest in over four years (see chart below).

Dimitrios Tsagalas of IOM Cyprus reported Monday that at least seven migrants and refugees, all Syrians, entered the Republic through the Ledra Palace checkpoint on Friday 19 October, in addition to the arrival of 51 Syrians a few hours earlier at Cape Greco in the Famagusta area. Among these 58 recent arrivals were 27 children.

He said these arrivals bring to 669 men, women and children arriving in Cyprus this year, or more than five times the total counted through this date in 2017.

IOM Greece’s Antigoni Avgeropoulou reported on Monday (22 October) that from Thursday through Sunday (18-21 October), the Hellenic Coast Guard (HCG) informed the United Nations Migration Agency it was involved in at least 11 incidents requiring search and rescue operations off the islands of Lesvos, Chios, Samos, Symi and Kos. The HCG rescued a total of 349 migrants and transferred them to those islands.

Additional arrivals of some 270 to those same islands over these past four days brings to 25,938 the total number of arrivals by sea to Greece through 21 October[GF1]  (see chart below).

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project estimates that at least 2,962 people died or went missing on migratory routes across the globe in 2018 (see chart below).

In addition to the devastating death toll in the Mediterranean, two Venezuelans were reported drowned in the Caribbean, in a shipwreck off the coast of Aruba on 19 October. They were travelling with 17 others in a boat that departed Friday night from the town of El Supí, on Venezuela’s the Paraguaná Peninsula. The remains of the two men were recovered by Aruban authorities, who detained five people. Several others managed to swim to the island. It is not yet known if there are any other passengers missing or known to have survived.

Hundreds of people have joined a caravan of migrants travelling through Central America attempting to escape poverty and the threat of violence. As they crossed Guatemala towards the Mexican border, a young Honduran man died in a vehicle accident in the highway Ruta del Pacífico-Amatitlán on 20 October.

In a separate incident, six Guatemalan nationals (five men and a woman) died in a car crash in the Mexican state of Chiapas on 21 October. Information on migrant deaths and disappearances in Central America and Mexico is scattered and imprecise, and the deaths documented by the Missing Migrants Project likely only capture a fraction of the true number of deaths.

Missing Migrants Project data are compiled by IOM staff but come from a variety of sources, some of which are unofficial. To learn more about how data on migrants’ deaths and disappearances are collected, click here.

For latest arrivals and fatalities in the Mediterranean, please visit: http://migration.iom.int/europe
Learn more about the Missing Migrants Project at: http://missingmigrants.iom.int

For more information, please contact:
Joel Millman at IOM HQ, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int
Mircea Mocanu, IOM Romania, Tel:  +40212115657, Email: MMOCANU@iom.int
Dimitrios Tsagalas, IOM Cyprus, Tel: + 22 77 22 70, E-mail: dtsagalas@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean, Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int
Hicham Hasnaoui, IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int
Ana Dodevska, IOM Spain, Tel: +34 91 445 7116, Email: adodevska@iom.int 
Kelly Namia, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 991 2174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Antigoni Avgeropoulou, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 99 19 040 ext. 166; M. +30 69 48 92 98 09 Email: aavgeropoulou@iom.int
Christine Nikolaidou, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 99 19 040 ext. 248, Email: cnikolaidou@iom.int
Ivona Zakoska, IOM Regional DTM, Austria, Tel: + +43 1 5812222, Email: izakoska@iom.int
Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Germany, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Christine Petré, IOM Libya, Tel. +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int
Myriam Chabbi, IOM Tunisia, Mobile: +216 28 78 78 05, Tel: +216 71 860 312 (Ext. 109), Email: mchabbi@iom.int
Dimitrios Tsagalas, IOM Cyprus, Tel: + 22 77 22 70, E-mail: dtsagalas@iom.int

 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:17Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency Trains Korean Aid Workers in Safe and Secure Approaches in Field Environments

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:17

Incheon – Last year, a total of 313 humanitarian workers were attacked in the field, according to the UN Aid Workers Security Report.

To enhance aid workers’ awareness of their personal security and safety, IOM, the UN Migration Agency, offers a training programme on how to respond to various security challenges for people deployed to hostile environments.

Safe and Secure Approaches in the Field Environments (SSAFE) has become a UN-certified flagship security training for aid workers from government agencies, international organizations, NGOs and private sector organizations.

IOM in the Republic of Korea (ROK) and the ROK International Peace Supporting Standby Force (IPSSF), a Korean armed forces unit which provides training for peace keeping missions, jointly organized a SSAFE training in Incheon, ROK last week (16-19/10).

The training, which was funded by USAID’s Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA), was attended by 23 participants from UN agencies including the World Food Programme and Special Tribunal for Lebanon; NGOs World Vision and ChildFund; and private sector companies IBM Korea and the Hankyoreh Media Group.

“As field operations have become more complex and unpredictable, demand for capacity building workshops (of this kind) has been growing among humanitarians. This four-day training was an excellent opportunity to understand threats to my security and (counter) measures that I can apply in the field. I hope more Korean aid workers can learn these essential skills to stay safe,” said a participant employed by a Korean NGO.

Facilitated by IOM’s Staff Security Unit, the training included lectures and field exercises designed to equip participants with personal security awareness, first aid and radio communication skills. It also provided two days of scenario-based exercises, including hostage survival and checkpoint simulations.

IOM Senior Security Operations Officer Steve Mayall, who led the programme, noted the enthusiasm of participants to learn about how to protect themselves from unexpected dangers. “Everyone fully grasps the notion that a better understanding of the potential hazards will mitigate the risks that they will encounter during their deployments in the field,” he said.

IOM ROK has been hosting safety and security trainings to Korean humanitarian workers since 2015. 

For more information please contact IOM ROK: Miah Park, Tel: +82 70 4820 2781, Email: mipark@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:16Image: Region-Country: Republic of KoreaThemes: Capacity BuildingDefault: Multimedia: 

Safe and Secure Approaches in Field Environments (SSAFE) training includes lifesaving skills such as CPR. Photo: IOM

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Mongolia Internal Migration Drives Urbanization, De-population of Rural Areas: IOM

IOM - News - Mar, 10/23/2018 - 10:16

Ulaanbataar  –  The first nationwide study of migration in Mongolia reveals that most of the country’s internal migrants over the past 30 years have moved from rural areas to the capital, Ulaanbaatar, causing intensive urbanization and de-population of the countryside.

According to Mongolia: Internal Migration Study conducted by the National University of Mongolia, nearly half of the country’s population (47 percent) are now living in the capital, up from a little over a quarter (26.8 percent) in 1989. Between 20110 and 2016 some 126,143 people arrived at Ulaanbaatar, bringing the total population to 1.4 million, according to the National Statistics Office.

The study, which surveyed 1,000 migrant and non-migrant households, showed that most people did not migrate in response to a specific event. Most moved in search of jobs, better living conditions, educational opportunities, better health services, or to reunite with family members.

The majority settled in Ger districts on the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar, which now account for over 60 percent of the city’s population but have never been adequately integrated into municipal planning. New migrants form almost one third of the population living in these areas and an estimated 40 percent of them are believed to need support.

Some of the challenges and hardships they face are outlined in a second report: Urban Migrant Vulnerability Assessment compiled by the NGO Ger Community Mapping Center(https://www.germapcenter.org/.)

Both studies, conducted over a year, are part of an IOM project: “Understanding and Managing Internal Migration in Mongolia,” supported by the Ulaanbaatar City Municipality (UCM) and funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC.)

“SDC’s support for conducting these assessments reflects a new direction in the Swiss Cooperation Strategy with Mongolia 2018-21 that aims at enhancing our engagement in addressing the challenges of rapid urbanization,” said Gabriella Spirli, SDC’s Director for Cooperation.

“Although the studies showed that the majority of migrants feel better off in Ulaanbaatar, they also revealed much information about the types of hardships the migrants face in the capital,” said Ulaanbaatar City Mayor S. Batbold. “These studies have presented us with invaluable evidence on which to base a new city population policy to meet the needs of residents.”

“These studies go further than providing important baseline data. They represent a breakthrough, because they are evidence-based and propose short- and longer-term solutions at national and local levels to improve current policies and procedures,” said IOM Mongolia Officer in Charge Richard Fairbrother. “IOM will continue supporting the government, the UCM, and the people of Mongolia, to uphold the human dignity and well-being of Mongolia’s internal migrants,” he added.

Following the launch of the reports, IOM will provide training to Mongolian policy makers on the principles, dynamics and challenges that characterize strategic management of internal migration. The training will aim to help the government to eventually draft a policy framework for managing internal migration.

Separately, IOM is today (22-23/10) organizing a two-day training in the use of its Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) for 43 trainers from Mongolia’s National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA.) NEMA is responsible for emergency preparedness, planning and early warning systems nationwide.

Rural populations in Mongolia are particularly vulnerable to the impact of climate change and natural disasters. The rising incidence of severe droughts and dzuds (harsh winters) in the country often forces herders to either travel longer distances to find pastures or, in the event of losing their livestock, to move to urban centres.

The NEMA trainers will share their knowledge with district (soum) level colleagues to improve data collection, processing and assessment to inform emergency responses and enhance NEMA’s understanding of population movements and the needs of displaced populations on the move. A series of further trainings for soum DTM focal points is scheduled for December.

For more information on IOM’s “Understanding and Managing Internal Migration in Mongolia” project please go to: https://www.iom.int/sites/default/files/country/docs/mongolia/iom-mongolia-sdc-project-factsheet-2017-2018.pdf

For more information please contact Zuzana Jankechova at IOM Mongolia, Email: zjankechova@iom.int, Tel: +976 70143100.

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2018 - 16:08Image: Region-Country: MongoliaThemes: Migration ResearchDefault: Multimedia: 

Mass migration from the countryside to urban areas is transforming Mongolia. Photo: IOM

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM