Languages

  • English
  • Deutsch
Subscribe to PBN News Germany feed
Updated: 2 hours 7 min ago

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 76,558 in 2019; Deaths Reach 1,071

Fri, 10/11/2019 - 10:34

Geneva – IOM reports that 76,558 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea through 9 October, roughly a 13 per cent decrease from the 87,923 arriving during the same period last year.

Arrivals this year to Greece and Spain are at 41,321 and 19,443 respectively, (60,764 combined) accounting for almost 80 per cent of the regional total, with the balance arriving in much smaller numbers to Italy, Malta and Cyprus. Arrivals to Greece are running approximately 70 per cent ahead of 2018’s totals from this time. Arrivals to Spain are more than 50 per cent lower.

Deaths recorded on the three main Mediterranean Sea routes through over nine months of 2019 are at 1,071 individuals – or about 55 per cent of the 1,930 deaths confirmed during the same period in 2018 (see chart below).

 

In recent weeks, the deaths of several dozen people were documented on sea routes across the Mediterranean.

In the Western Mediterranean, a 6-year-old child died during a medical evacuation on 4 October. Spanish rescue services had found the boy, along with his mother and 64 other people from Sub-Saharan Africa, on a boat 44 miles south-east of Motril, Granada. The boy had a low body temperature and had trouble breathing and was medically evacuated with his mother by helicopter to a hospital in Almería, Spain. Tragically, he died before reaching the hospital.

In 2019, at least 317 people have lost their lives attempting to reach Spain via the Western Mediterranean.
 
More recently, on the Mediterranean’s Central route, a boat capsized off the coast of Lampedusa on 7 October, killing at least 28 people. The remains of 13 women (including those of a girl aged 12) were recovered from the water, while 15 people remain missing. Twenty-two survivors were rescued and brought to Lampedusa.

While the total number of deaths recorded in 2019 in the Central Mediterranean has decreased, all available data indicate that conditions for those embarking on this journey are worsening. The mortality rate (the number of fatalities as a proportion of attempted crossings) has increased, which means that the risk of dying during this crossing is rising,

In the first nine months of 2019, one in 28 people who attempted the crossing perished. During the same period of 2018, the rate of death was 1 in 32, still a tragic increase from the death rate recorded in 2017, which was 1 in 51 (see chart below).

 

Note: The mortality rate was calculated by dividing the number of migrant fatalities (the numerator) recorded in 2017, 2018 and 2019 by the number of migrants who travelled on the route (the denominator) during each year. The denominator includes the number of people who arrived in Italy and Malta, the number of people who were intercepted at sea and returned to Libya and Tunisia, and the number of people who died or went missing at sea. Data sources: IOM’s Missing Migrants Project and IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix

This mortality rate is calculated on the basis of recorded deaths, that is, those deaths which are reported and documented. It is likely that many more deaths happen than are currently recorded – a concerning consequence of the reduced number of dedicated search-and-rescue operations in the Mediterranean is the increased invisibility of migrant deaths. In this context, the risk that shipwrecks are occurring far from the eyes of the international community has intensified.

Missing Migrants Project
2019 is the sixth year of IOM’s efforts to systematically record deaths on migration routes worldwide through its Missing Migrants Project. Since the beginning of 2014, the project has recorded the deaths of 33,631 people, including 2,469 in 2019 (see chart further below).

Due to the challenges of collecting information about these people and the contexts of their deaths, the true number of lives lost during migration is likely much higher. Missing Migrants Project records should only be viewed as indicative of the risks associated with migration, rather than representative of the true number of deaths across time or geography.

On the US-Mexico border, the deaths of six people were reported since last week’s update. Two deaths due to dehydration were reported on the US side of the border. On 2 October, the remains of a young Mexican man, who had been reported missing by his family, were found in a ranch in Webb County, Texas. Just two days later, a 25-year-old man from Guanajuato, Mexico, died while traversing through a remote stretch of land in Dimmit County, also in Texas.

At least 45 people have reportedly died of weather exposure on the US-Mexico border in 2019. Additionally, four men drowned in the Río Bravo between October 3 and 7 while attempting to reach Texas from Tamaulipas. Their remains were recovered on Mexican riverbanks. Since the beginning of 2019, the deaths of 101 people have been documented in the Río Bravo. This figure is already higher than the total number of drownings (87) recorded in the Río Bravo for all of 2018.

Across all four corridors in the Americas, MMP so far in 2019 has recorded 608 deaths, compared with 466 at this point last year, an increase of 30 per cent.

Elsewhere: in Europe, three people were killed in a car accident in northern Greece this week, when a van in which 11 migrants were travelling overturned near the town of Areti, located 40km northeast of Thessaloniki. That accident occurred on 9 October. Of the 52 deaths documented on the European continent in 2019, 33 per cent have been due to vehicle accidents.

Missing Migrants Project data are compiled by IOM staff based at its Global Migration Data Analysis Centre 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.

The report Fatal Journeys Volume 4, published 28 June, includes an overview of five years of Missing Migrants Project data (2014-2018) and an update on what is known about deaths during migration in 2019.

 

See contacts here.

Language English Posted: Friday, October 11, 2019 - 16:17Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Missing MigrantsDefault: Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Fatalities in 2019 Rise to 1,071 with Latest Shipwreck off Lampedusa

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 10:44

Rome — IOM Italy is continuing to monitor reports from North Africa and Italy in the wake of the latest Mediterranean shipwreck occurring off the coast of Lampedusa during the night between 6 and 7 October.

IOM’s Flavio Di Giacomo reported Monday a boat departing Tunisia and carrying between 50 and 55 people capsized seven miles from the coast of the Italian island. He said the craft was overloaded and weather conditions in the vicinity were bad. He said the migrants departed from Tunisia’s Kerkennah Island on board a wooden boat.

Authorities found 22 migrants who survived the disaster, while 13 bodies – all women – were recovered by the Italian Coast Guard and Guardia di Finanza. As of Tuesday morning, 17 migrants remained missing, including more women and at least two children. Among the missing are nationals of the Ivory Coast, Cameroon and Guinea Conakry and four Tunisian nationals including three men and one 17-year-old boy.

Migrants reported losing their brothers, sisters, husbands and friends, Di Giacomo reported, adding that one woman in a critical condition has been transferred by helicopter to Palermo hospital.

IOM staffers have provided assistance. According to testimony from survivors gathered by IOM staff at their landing point, their craft was carrying 15 Tunisians as well as migrants coming from a variety of West African countries. The 13 female victims are said to have been from Côte d'Ivoire, Burkina Faso and Guinea.

This latest tragedy brings to 1,071 the total number of deaths confirmed on the Mediterranean through 6 October, nearly two thirds of those deaths coming in the waters between North Africa and Italy (see chart below). 

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project reported Monday that these deaths bring to 15,750 the total number of dead on this route since 1 January 2014. That is approximately ten times the total lost on the Mediterranean’s eastern corridor linking the Middle East to Greece and almost the same multiple of all deaths on the Western route linking North Africa to Spain.

The Missing Migrants Project, also on Monday, released new data concerning deaths to Spain, adding 403 deaths since 1 January 2014 of seaborne migrants seeking to access Spain via Las Canarias islands in the Atlantic Ocean due west of Africa.

So far in 2019, the Missing Migrants Project has recorded 77 deaths on this route, nearly twice those recorded in 2017 and 2018, combined (see chart below).

*Data as of 6 October

For more information, please contact Joel Millman, IOM Geneva, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 - 16:42Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Missing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Decongestion of Greek Islands Continues as 700 Refugees and Migrants Move to Mainland

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 10:44

Athens – Another 700 vulnerable refugees and migrants were safely transported from the Greek islands to the mainland on Monday (07/10) morning as part of Greece’s ongoing effort to decongest the overcrowded North-Eastern Aegean islands.

The group arrived in Piraeus, the largest port in Greece, where the International Organization for Migration (IOM) then transported them to designated accommodation sites that have been set up on the Greek mainland. The majority were families with children from Afghanistan and came from the islands of Lesvos, Samos, Chios, Leros and Kos.

“I was in Moria [on Lesvos] for the last 10 months. The situation was very difficult there for me and my family. This is a new day for us and we can now see the future from a different scope,” said Zeina, a 24-year-old woman from Afghanistan.

The latest arrivals bring to 3,887, the number of people that IOM has transferred from the ports to new and existing mainland accommodation facilities, where new places have been created.

 “IOM is ensuring smooth and effective operations at all accommodation facilities on the mainland of Greece and providing comprehensive services to the vulnerable groups,” said Gianluca Rocco, IOM Chief of Mission for Greece.

“Among other services, we are providing interpreters, psychologists, social workers, legal counsellors and facility coordinators with a special focus on psychosocial expertise, legal support and child protection,” he added.

The recent tragedy at the Moria camp where migrants lost their lives further shows that the conditions are untenable for people there, the staff and the local community. With the recent increase in arrivals to Greece, the Moria reception and identification center (RIC) of Lesvos is now hosting over 13,000 refugees and migrants, more than four times its capacity. 

A similar situation exists on the island of Samos, where the local reception and identification center (RIC) is hosting 5,800 migrants, with a capacity of 648. The facilities on the islands of Chios, Kos and Leros are also facing mounting overpopulation pressure. 

Given the poor conditions on the overcrowded facilities of the islands, IOM is supporting the Greek authorities with the decongestion effort and the movement of vulnerable people arriving from the islands to open accommodation facilities on the mainland. The Organization, with EU funding, is complementing the effort with the expansion of existing accommodation and creation of new places on the mainland to host the most vulnerable populations coming from the islands.

IOM, in collaboration with partners, Danish Refugee Council (DRC), Arbeiter Samariter Bund (ASB) and UNICEF, provides site management support services at 29 open accommodation facilities currently hosting some 19,000 refugees and migrants. IOM also operates in 33 temporary facilities all over Greece, currently providing accommodation to some 4,200 vulnerable refugees and asylum seekers, with the support of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Migration and Home Affairs (DG HOME).

For more information please contact Christine Nikolaidou at IOM Greece. Email: cnikolaidou@iom.int, Tel:+30 210 – 9919040 ext. 248

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 - 16:45Image: Region-Country: GreeceThemes: Migrant AssistanceDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM welcomes families from Afghanistan coming from Moria (Lesvos). Photo: IOM 

IOM facilitates the transportation of vulnerable population coming from the islands to sites in Northern Greece. Photo: IOM 

Families board buses at the Port of Piraeus, taking them to locations in mainland Greece. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Towards the Sustainable Reintegration of Returned Migrants: Cash for Work Activities in Guinea Bissau

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 10:44

Bissau — Soil erosion is but one of many environmental threats that dramatically impact the rural economy in Guinea-Bissau. It’s part of a range of push factors behind internal and external migration in the impoverished West African nation.

Guinea-Bissau is a country of origin for many young people who are looking for better livelihood opportunities abroad. But it is also a country of destination and of transit of many migrants from West and Central Africa. According to authorities, there were more than 70,000 immigrants from the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) countries residing in Guinea Bissau in 2018.

Reforestation is one way to fight erosion and, not incidentally, a method of disrupting the displacement of poor farmers who might otherwise seek new livelihoods in African cities, or abroad.

The reforestation of Guinea-Bissau’s eastern Gabu region is part of cash-for-work activities, the first steps towards the sustainable reintegration for some 529 returned migrants, funded by the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for migrant protection and reintegration.

Last month, 25 returned migrants and 15 community members participated in a reforestation activity in Gabu. Two hundred trees of five different species were planted in four days on over 13,000 square meters of a region suffering severe deforestation. The region is also known as one of the nation’s principal migration-prone areas.

“Cash for work benefits both returned migrants and communities. The programmes provide them with cash support during the crucial transition period between their return and reintegration, while contributing to the development of their communities of return,” said Laura Amadori, Chief of Mission of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Guinea-Bissau.

“These activities often, in turn, facilitate their social reinsertion,” she added, explaining that by involving communities in the activities, tension between returnees and local population may be averted because such projects benefit all.

Since March 2019, 125 returned migrants and 76 community members have participated in sanitation and reforestation activities in Gabu. The returned migrants are part of the 529 Bissauans stranded in Niger and Libya assisted with voluntary return by IOM since May 2017.

In December 2018, the Republic of Guinea-Bissau joined more than 150 UN Member States in signing the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), the world’s first agreement for a comprehensive approach to human mobility and enhanced cooperation at the global level.

On 26-27 September, IOM supported the Government of Guinea Bissau in the development of the country’s Global Compact for Migration Action Plan. One hundred and fifty-five government, civil society, development officials and academics participated in the two-day workshop event and reflected on the priorities of the GCM for Guinea-Bissau.

Implementing the GCM in Guinea-Bissau will contribute to improving the governance of migrations in Guinea-Bissau, both internal and external through negotiations with Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) states to facilitate the mobility of Guinea-Bissau citizens and the development of a national migration policy.

For more information, please contact Laura Amadori at IOM Guinea-Bissau, Email: lamadori@iom.int, or Florence Kim at the IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa, Tel: +2217 8620 6213, Email: fkim@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 - 16:23Image: Region-Country: Guinea-BissauThemes: Assisted Voluntary Return and ReintegrationDefault: Multimedia: 

Returned migrants and community members planting trees in Gabu as part of their cash for work activity. Photo: IOM/Sandro Tavares 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

New Challenges Posed by East-West Brain Drain, Warns IOM at High-Level Vienna Event

Tue, 10/08/2019 - 10:44

Vienna — Central and Eastern European countries are seeing dramatic shifts in their migration patterns, changing the makeup of communities and posing heretofore unseen challenges, warned the International Organization for Migration (IOM) at a major conference on the 'brain drain' phenomenon at the headquarters of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Monday.

The changing nature of work and demographic trends are having a significant impact on labour migration policies within the region, noted IOM’s Regional Director for South-Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Argentina Szabados, speaking at Vienna’s Hofburg Palace.

“The fast-moving digitalisation of work and the so-called gig economy are having significant and often unpredictable influences,” noted Szabados. “Current migration levels and the demographic trends in the region suggest that labour mobility will continue to be a defining feature of the region. This is particularly true for non-offshorable and non-automatable occupations.”

The conference gave government representatives, United Nations agencies, international organizations, and businesses an occasion to take stock of the evolution of human capital migration patterns, to re-examine existing conceptual frameworks and to renew cooperation. The high-level dialogue also provided an opportunity to debate new ideas which can shape future policies, while introducing the business/work-forces nexus to contemporary debate.

The event was organized by the Southeast European Cooperative Initiative, under the patronage of Alexander van der Bellen, Federal President of the Republic of Austria.

While welcoming efforts made to accommodate and integrate migrant workers in the changing world of work, Szabados outlined the challenges faced by society: “We need to recognize that integration is not just about the services we offer to immigrants, but also the way we design our public spaces, the way we structure our housing policy, the way we organize our public transportation, and the way our media communicate.” She added, “Governments supporting labour mobility and employers bringing in foreign workers need to work together with local stakeholders to develop comprehensive approaches to support migrants’ integration and social cohesion within communities.”

For more information please contact Joe Lowry at the IOM Regional Office for South-Eastern Europe, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Tel: +436603776404, Email jlowry@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 8, 2019 - 16:27Image: Region-Country: AustriaThemes: Labour MigrationDefault: Multimedia: 

Argentina Szabados, Director of IOM’s Vienna Regional Office addresses the brain drain phenomenon at a high-level dialogue at the OSCE headquarters in Vienna. She was speaking on behalf of IOM Director General António Vitorino. Photo: IOM 

Argentina Szabados, Director of IOM’s Vienna Regional Office addresses the brain drain phenomenon at a high-level dialogue at the OSCE headquarters in Vienna. She was speaking on behalf of IOM Director General António Vitorino. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM, Fast Retailing to Map Apparel Labour Supply Chains, Uphold Migrant Workers' Rights

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Tokyo Global apparel company Fast Retailing and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) have launched an initiative to study the recruitment and employment conditions of migrant workers in Fast Retailing’s supply chains.  

The project aims to clarify the situation on the ground and to develop the company’s capacity to respond to identified challenges related to the human and labour rights of migrant workers.  

The work was initiated at a joint event at the company’s Tokyo headquarters and will include engagement with suppliers based in Japan, Thailand and Malaysia. Fast Retailing’s brands include UNIQLO, GU, Theory, Helmut Lang, PLST (Plus T), Comptoir des Cotonniers, Princesse tam.tam and J Brand. 

The exploitation of migrant workers in global supply chains often begins in their home country, where they are forced to pay excessive fees to secure employment. This can create heavy indebtedness that makes it impossible for them to walk away from exploitative working conditions, according to IOM.  

IOM and Fast Retailing have joined forces to promote ethical recruitment practices and address related risks of modern slavery and human trafficking. The collaboration will include a preliminary study on recruitment practices carried out by Fast Retailing’s suppliers that employ migrant workers. They will also work together through training to embed principles and measures protecting women and men migrant workers in the company’s policies and guidelines. 

  

The joint project is aligned with Fast Retailing’s pledge to transform recruitment and employment practices in its supply chains, as a participant in the Fair Labour Association (FLA)/American Apparel and Footwear Association (AAFA) Industry Commitment to Responsible Recruitment.  

At the heart of this commitment are the principles that no worker should pay for a job; that no worker should have their passport or documents retained by an employer; and that employment contract terms and conditions must be clear, enforced and respected.  

In order to achieve this, Fast Retailing has recognized the need to work together with expert organizations to strengthen its capacity in implementing responsible recruitment and fair labour practices within its operations and supply chains. In addition to its partnership with IOM – and in consultation with FLA – it has launched other initiatives with the International Labour Organization (ILO) and UN Women in 2019. 

Veronique Rochet, Sustainability Director at Fast Retailing, said:“This project with IOM is an important step for our company and we are looking forward to make the most of this partnership to create a lasting framework that truly protects the rights of migrant workers contributing to our products.” 

Rochet added that this was in line with several efforts Fast Retailing has been making to align with the highest possible international standards governing fair labour practices, regarding which its participation in the FLA/AAFA Industry Commitment to Responsible Recruitment is a key reference point.  

She concluded, “Our Code of Conduct and other guidelines we have adopted so far already reflect this, but we look forward to continue improving our oversight and sharing our learnings with other industry partners.”  

In Asia’s apparel supply chains, migrant workers – including low-skilled women from rural areas – make up an important part of the workforce. Many of those coming to Japan, Malaysia and Thailand are vulnerable to coercive recruitment and exploitation at the hands of unverified recruiters who charge excessive recruitment fees that result in debt bondage, according to IOM Japan Chief of Mission Mio Sato. 

“This partnership between IOM and a leading Japanese company is innovative and will bring valuable insights and results. For our office in Japan, working with the Japanese private sector to find solutions to labour migration challenges, particularly in the present context when Japan is shifting towards becoming a more established destination country, is of the utmost importance,” Sato said. 

“The results of the partnership will hopefully contribute to increased awareness among Japanese businesses of international supply chains, particularly regarding the need to integrate the protection of migrant workers’ rights in business policies and practices,” she added. 

IOM’s partnership with Fast Retailing is part of its direct engagement and partnership building with businesses to address migrant worker vulnerabilities and develop sustainable solutions. It does this notably through its flagship private sector engagement initiatives: the CREST (Corporate Responsibility for Eliminating Slavery and Trafficking) and the IRIS (International Recruitment Integrity System) projects.  

For more information please contact Joaquim Torrinha at IOM Viet Nam. Email: jtorrinha@iom.int, Tel:+842838222058. 

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:55Image: Region-Country: JapanThemes: Migrants RightsDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM and Fast Retailing launch initiative to promote ethical recruitment in apparel supply chains. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Saudi Arabia’s KSrelief, Kuwait Support Somalis Returning from Yemen

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Berbera – This week, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) assisted 143 Somali returnees stranded in Yemen to return home. A total of 46 men, 41 women, 26 boys and 30 girls set of by boat from Aden, Yemen, on Monday 30 September and arrived the next day at the port of Berbera. 

The movement was made possible through funding from the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre (KSrelief) and the Government of Kuwait. IOM works in partnership with UNHCR on returnee movements out of war-torn Yemen. With the conflict having effects on the economic and security situation in Yemen, many migrants and refugees find themselves without the means to provide for themselves and their families. Stranded, they then turn to humanitarian organizations for return assistance.  

At Berbera port, representatives from the Somaliland National Displacement and Refugee Agency (NDRA), together with IOM, UNHCR, KSrelief, the Danish Refugee Council, Somaliland Red Crescent Society, Ministry of Health and the Immigration Department, welcomed the returnees home. One of them, a 50-year-old man, expressed his gratitude: “We were provided with transport and welcomed nicely. I decided to return after I realised that the war, the main reason I left Somalia, has ended.”  

“We thank KSrelief for their support to this important project enabling Somali to return back to their home,” said NDRA representative Abdiqani Abdirahman Mohamoud, who also acknowledged IOM and other counterparts involved in the operation. 

Since this KSrelief-funded project began in November 2018, 1,505 (783 men and 722 women) Somali returnees were assisted. The aim of the project is to facilitate safe and dignified movements from Yemen and contribute to sustainable reintegration of Somali returnees.  

“I am happy to attend the arrival of this twelfth movement we were able to support. We thank the government authorities, IOM and the other agencies for their efforts in welcoming the returnees and providing them with further assistance,” said Yousef Bakheet R. Albulushi, KSrelief representative at the port of Berbera. 

Contributions from the Government of Kuwait were also used to finance the movement from the Yemen side on 30 September. 

IOM and partners offered reception assistance to the people returning from Yemen. Those in need of medical support were assisted at the IOM clinic at the Berbera Reception Centre, together with the Ministry of Health supported by IOM. In the days that followed their arrival, IOM helped to ensure that the returnees had the support needed to reach their final destination.  

For more information, please contact: 

IOM office in Hargeisa: Sikhulile Dhlamini, Tel: +252634163636, Email: sidhlamini@iom.int 

IOM Yemen: Olivia Headon, Tel: +967730552233, Email: oheadon@iom.int 

This document has been edited with the instant web content composer. The online instant HTML editor tools make a great resource that will help you a lot in your work. Save this link or add it to your bookmarks.

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:50Image: Region-Country: SomaliaThemes: Refugee and Asylum IssuesDefault: Multimedia: 

Somali returnees embarking the vessel in Aden, Yemen. Photo: IOM 

Somali returnees embarking the vessel in Aden, Yemen. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

New District Task Forces to Strengthen Counter Human Trafficking in Sierra Leone

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Freetown – Sierra Leone is a source, transit, and destination country for thousands of children and women trafficked for forced labour and sexual exploitation every year. Although no official database exists to accurately measure the scope of the phenomenon in the country, it is believed to be affecting mostly children who are taken from their homes and forced to beg on the streets, or work in homes as houseboys, in mines or in plantations.  

Human trafficking also affects young Sierra Leonean women and girls who are scammed into paying hefty sums of money for fake employment offers in foreign countries – in the Gulf for instance – only to be coerced into modern slavery or sexual exploitation. 

In 2005, three years after the end of a civil war which cost more than 50,000 lives and set the ground to human trafficking networks, Sierra Leone passed the Anti-Human Trafficking Act, thus recognizing the phenomenon as a major national issue.  

A National Task Force on Human Trafficking was established with the responsibility to coordinate the implementation of this Act, especially with regard to the enforcement of the law against trafficking.  

However, in 2017, only 9 per cent of the victims of trafficking identified by the Sierra Leone Ministry for Social Welfare, Gender and Children Affairs (MSWGCA) came from the Western Urban District where Freetown is located.  

“Criminal cases rely on victim testimonies, but this can be difficult to access since the Task Force is located in Freetown and most victims come from far away provinces,” explained Marian Harding-Tommy, Senior Social Welfare Officer for Human Trafficking at the MSWGCA. 

“Because victims of trafficking often cannot afford the expensive trip from their district to the capital to testify or present evidence, their cases are closed,” she added. 

But this will soon change. Last week, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) supported the MSWGCA in the decentralisation of the National Task Force in 14 of Sierra Leone’s districts to increase victims’ and potential victims’ access to information, protection and justice mechanisms, and avoid procedural delays related to prosecuting traffickers. 

The new district task forces will be co-chaired by the MSWGCA and the Office of National Security (ONS), and composed of traditional and religious authorities, the police’s Family Support Unit, youth committees, motor bikers’ union, teachers’ guild and radio journalists. 

“Our aim is to bring the lifesaving services of the Task Force closer to the populations by bringing together key community members,” said Mangeh Sesay, National Project Officer for IOM Sierra Leone.  

Through monthly meetings, it is expected that these new district task forces will contribute to collecting more data and testimonies to assess the scope of human trafficking in the country. In the future, task force members will also be trained in identifying, referring and providing immediate assistance to victims of trafficking.  

IOM’s counter-trafficking activities in Sierra Leone are implemented in the framework of the Africa Regional Migration Programme funded by the United States Department of State’s Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM).  

For more information, please contact Clara Perez at the IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa, Email:claperez@iom.intMangeh Sesay at IOM Sierra Leone, Email:msesay@iom.int; or visit www.rodakar.iom.int 

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:45Image: Region-Country: Sierra LeoneThemes: Human SmugglingDefault: Multimedia: 

The members of the New Bombali District (Northern Province) Taskforce Against Human Trafficking. Photo: François-Xavier Ada-Affana 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Fish Farming in Northern Niger Boosts Local Economy

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Niamey – The adoption of the law N° 2015-36 criminalizing the smuggling of migrants in the country – that, and the closing of several gold mines, once magnets drawing job seekers – have left many people living along northern Niger’s migration routes in search for alternative income-generating activities.  

Together with local authorities, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has been working hard in recent years on strengthening the socio-economic development of communities living in the migratory zone.  

This week, IOM completed a fish farming project in Bilma, in the Kawar region in northern Niger, to the benefit of more than 6,500 people, through its project Community Stabilization Initiatives in Northern Niger (COSINN), funded by the German Federal Foreign Office. 

“Before this project, all the fish supply in the Kawar region came from Libya or Agadez. This initiative gives the local community the opportunity to buy fish at affordable prices,” stated Sanda Chegou, vice-mayor of Bilma. “The initiative also creates socio-economic opportunities and empowers our youth which is a priority for our region.” 

The Aboubou pond used to have a variety of fish species, most notably tilapia. However, its weak management in the past years has led to the loss and weakening of the existing fish stock.  

This project is implemented in the framework of Bilma's 2014-2018 Communal Development Plan (PDC) and addresses several of its objectives, such as environmental protection, natural resource management and more specifically to the promotion of fish farming. The project also complies with national environmental guidelines concerning the preservation of the region’s valuable water resources. 

Additionally, the project also allows to ensure food security for the community members, while also strengthening their leadership and entrepreneurial skills.  

To ensure the sustainability of the project, 18 beneficiaries, including four women, attended trainings in fish farming techniques and business management, organized by Bilma’s technical environmental service of the Department for Wildlife, Fishing and Fish Farming. Through the project, the beneficiaries also received suitable equipment, including fishing gear. 

“The authorities in Bilma had been thinking for a long time of ways to exploit the Aboubou pond to the benefit of the community. I am grateful they finally found a solution for it,” said Fatoumata, one of the project’s beneficiaries. “I now own a profitable business which meets the needs of my family.” 

The initiative is looking at producing five tons of fish per year and rebuilding the fish stock through the introduction of predatory species aimed at controlling overpopulation. The beneficiaries are planning to sell the fish in December once the fish reach full maturity. 

For more information, please contact Monica Chiriac at IOM Niger, Tel: +227 8931 8764, Email: mchiriac@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:40Image: Region-Country: NigerThemes: Migration and EnvironmentDefault: Multimedia: 

The Aboubou pond is part of Bilma’s collective heritage and managed by the community itself. Photo: IOM/Ahmed Elhadji 

The Aboubou pond is part of Bilma’s collective heritage and managed by the community itself. Photo: IOM/Ahmed Elhadji 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Tapping into the Albanian Scientific Diaspora

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Tirana – Over 1.4 million Albanians currently live outside the country, representing a huge and largely untapped opportunity for economic and social development.  

IOM Albania runs a programme focused on engaging the Diaspora, and this week focused on the potential of plugging into the large number of Albanian scientists dotted around the globe. The Organization contributed to the 14th Annual Meeting of the Alb-Science Institute held in Tirana, on 27-28 September, under the theme Research in Our Homeland, organized by the Minister for Diaspora and Albanian National Fund of Diaspora.  

“This event brings together hundreds of representatives of the most active and well-known scientific Albanian Diaspora worldwide to present the latest achievements of their studies,” stated Manoela Lussi, Manager of the IOM Diaspora Programme in her address to the forum. “It is a great opportunity to create an environment that encourages and supports diaspora engagement by sharing good practices, experiences and talents to develop their home country.” 

The event was divided into different thematic panels focused on education, historiography, medicine, justice, language, culture and economy. 

IOM highlighted during the event the importance of engagement of high skilled and talented Albanian diaspora individuals, by presenting its Fellowship scheme where six young researchers are working on a cultural heritage scheme.  

“This research is inspired by the relational principle, where each cultural site should not be seen as an isolated one, but on the contrary, as a reality in strong and constant relationship with its surrounding landscape and territory. This reflects our relationship with our home country,” said Kamela Guza, one of the fellows involved in the IOM Diaspora Programme, during her presentation.  

Endri Xhaferaj, Programme Officer at the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), added: “This programme is supporting the best of Albanian talents for the best of Albania and contributing to enhance the engagement of Albanian diaspora for the development of the country.” 

The programme Engage the Albanian Diaspora to the Social and Economic Development of Albania is implemented by IOM, with funding from the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), in coordination with the State Minister for Diaspora, Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Finance and Economy.  

For more information please contact BhardaQokaj at IOM Albania, Tel: + 355 686077519, Email:bqokaj@iom.int 

Web content composed with thefree online HTML editor. Please purchase a membership to remove promotional messages like this one.

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:35Image: Region-Country: AlbaniaThemes: OthersDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM’s booth at the science diaspora event in Tirana. Photo: IOM 

IOM project partner Kamela Guzi speaking at the science forum in Tirana, this week. Photo: IOM w

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM, Bhutan Immigration Build Himalayan Kingdom’s Border Management Capacity

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:53

Tirana – Over 1.4 million Albanians currently live outside the country, representing a huge and largely untapped opportunity for economic and social development.  

IOM Albania runs a programme focused on engaging the Diaspora, and this week focused on the potential of plugging into the large number of Albanian scientists dotted around the globe. The Organization contributed to the 14th Annual Meeting of the Alb-Science Institute held in Tirana, on 27-28 September, under the theme Research in Our Homeland, organized by the Minister for Diaspora and Albanian National Fund of Diaspora.  

“This event brings together hundreds of representatives of the most active and well-known scientific Albanian Diaspora worldwide to present the latest achievements of their studies,” stated Manoela Lussi, Manager of the IOM Diaspora Programme in her address to the forum. “It is a great opportunity to create an environment that encourages and supports diaspora engagement by sharing good practices, experiences and talents to develop their home country.” 

The event was divided into different thematic panels focused on education, historiography, medicine, justice, language, culture and economy. 

IOM highlighted during the event the importance of engagement of high skilled and talented Albanian diaspora individuals, by presenting its Fellowship scheme where six young researchers are working on a cultural heritage scheme.  

“This research is inspired by the relational principle, where each cultural site should not be seen as an isolated one, but on the contrary, as a reality in strong and constant relationship with its surrounding landscape and territory. This reflects our relationship with our home country,” said Kamela Guza, one of the fellows involved in the IOM Diaspora Programme, during her presentation.  

Endri Xhaferaj, Programme Officer at the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), added: “This programme is supporting the best of Albanian talents for the best of Albania and contributing to enhance the engagement of Albanian diaspora for the development of the country.” 

The programme Engage the Albanian Diaspora to the Social and Economic Development of Albania is implemented by IOM, with funding from the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation (AICS), in coordination with the State Minister for Diaspora, Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Finance and Economy.  

For more information please contact BhardaQokaj at IOM Albania, Tel: + 355 686077519, Email:bqokaj@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:30Image: Region-Country: BhutanThemes: Migration and DevelopmentDefault: Multimedia: 

Bhutanese immigration officials learn new skills to cope with changing migration patterns. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 72,263 in 2019; Deaths Reach 1,041

Fri, 10/04/2019 - 10:49

Geneva – IOM reports that 72,263 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea through 2 October, roughly a 14 per cent decrease from the 84,345 arriving during the same period last year.  

Arrivals this year to Greece and Spain are at 39,155 and 17,405, respectively (56,560 combined), accounting for about 78 per cent of the regional total, with the balance arriving in much smaller numbers to Italy, Malta and Cyprus. Arrivals to Greece are running approximately 60 per cent ahead of 2018’s totals from this time. Arrivals to Spain are more than 50 per cent lower.  

Deaths recorded on the three main Mediterranean Sea routes through 3 October are at 1,041 individuals – or about 55 per cent of the 1,890 deaths confirmed during the same period in 2018 (see chart below). 

The 1,041 deaths at sea include the deaths of several dozen people documented on sea routes across the Mediterranean in the past 10 days.  

Most recently, on 28 September, 16 people died and 37 went missing in a shipwreck off the coast of Mohammédia, in Morocco’s Atlantic coast, just 27km north of Casablanca. Three survivors were rescued by the Moroccan Royal Navy, and the remains of seven people, including those of a young woman, washed ashore on the same day on Plage Zenata, in the municipality of Ain Harrouda.  

Two days later, on Monday 30 September, the remains of five other people were found on a nearby beach, then remains of six more were recovered. Local NGOs Les Ponts Solidaires and the Association Marocaine des Droits Humains reported several dozen more remain missing. This is the deadliest incident that has taken place on this route since 17 January 2019, when a boat with 53 people on board disappeared without a trace in the Alborán Sea.  

According to Missing Migrants Project data, 315 lives have been lost on the Western Mediterranean route between 1 January and 1 October 2019. 

In the Eastern Mediterranean, five children and two women drowned when a boat capsized in the eastern Aegean Sea on 27 September. Twelve survivors were rescued from the water near Oinousses, about 8km from the Turkish coast. At least 66 people have died this year attempting the crossing from Turkey to the Greek islands, including 23 children and 12 women.  

These latest incidents brought the total number of deaths documented in the Mediterranean in 2019 to 1,041, the sixth year that more than one thousand deaths have been recorded on this sea crossing.  the MMP data base as of today has calculated 18,960 deaths or missing-and-presumed drowned victims since 1 January 2014. 

2014: 3,283 deaths 

2015: 4,055 deaths 

2016: 5,143 deaths 

2017: 3,139 deaths 

2018: 2,299 deaths 

2019: 1,041 

Total = 18,960 

Adding to these data those lost in the 2013 Lampedusa tragedy brings the total number fatalities over six years to well over 19,000 men, women and children.  

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project does not have data for the calendar year 2013, but certainly its researchers are aware of other shipwrecks with loss of life that year as well. 

IOM Italy 

IOM Italy’s Flavio Di Giacomo reported Thursday on the gathering of refugee organizations, civil society, international organizations (including IOM) in Lampedusa to commemorate the tragic shipwreck of 3 October 2013, during which 368 migrants lost their lives. 

In memory of the tragedy, Italy established in 2016 the “National Day of Remembrance for the Victims of Immigration”. 

“October the 3rd is a date that we must never forget,” said Laurence Hart, Director of IOM’s Coordination Office for the Mediterranean. “Last night, 72 lives were saved by the Italian Coast Guard, but this year almost 1,000 people lost their lives along the Central Mediterranean’s routes, which still remains the most dangerous migration route of the world. The tragedy of six years ago must still serve to remind us that saving human lives is an absolute priority. Behind the arrival data there are always men, women and children who lead extremely difficult lives, having faced dramatic and painful experiences.”  

Di Giacomo also reported that on the night of Wednesday, 2 October, 72 people were rescued by the Italian Coast Guard and brought to the island of Lampedusa. Conditions on board were dramatic and, due to severe weather, the rescue proved extremely difficult. Those present onboard included young Bengali males and women from West Africa. The migrants left Zwara, Libya, the night of Monday 30 September. 

Among the rescued migrants was a 30-year-old Cameroonian woman, who told IOM staff she survived the July 2nd attack at the Tajoura Centre in Libya. “I almost died in Tajoura and I lost my younger brother; he didn't make it,” she said. She explained: “I was taken to the hospital, but shortly thereafter they transferred me to the same centre again.” 

The woman explained she managed to escape after several days and, thanks to other migrant friends she met on the way, she moved into an urban settlement with others from West Africa. After earning some cash working as a maid, she managed to leave Libya, by boarding a boat headed for Italy. 

“Libya was a terrible experience for me, and I saw things that I could never have possibly imagined. I was kidnapped, by the so called ‘Hamsa Boys.’ And I was tortured for an entire month in one of their centres.” She said her family sold land in Cameroon to buy her freedom. 

  

IOM Greece 

IOM Greece’s Christine Nikolaidu reported on Thursday (03/10) that from Friday (27/09) to date, the Hellenic Coast Guard (HCG) was involved in at least 35 incidents requiring search and rescue operations off the islands of Lesvos, Samos, Chios, Kos, Oinousses, Kalymnos, Symi, Leros and the port of Alexandroupoli. The HCG rescued a total of 1,131 migrants and transferred them to the respective ports. 

Those arrivals bring to 39,155 men, women and children arriving in Greece this year by sea. Those arrivals, through nine months of 2019, are more than were recorded in all but two of the last six years. (see chart below). 

IOM Spain  

IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported Thursday that 3,037 irregular migrants entered Spain by sea last month, making September the busiest month for irregular sea arrivals since January, when 4,104 came ashore. Nonetheless, last month’s totals are less than half of those of September 2018, when 8,054 irregular migrants landed on Spain’s coasts.  

The following month – October 2018 – saw more arrivals to Spain than any other month over the past five years: 11,010. Those numbers are unlikely to be repeated this month, as overall arrivals in 2019 are about half of last year’s totals. 

Missing Migrants Project 

2019 is the sixth year of IOM’s efforts to systematically record deaths on migration routes worldwide through its Missing Migrants Project. Since the beginning of 2014, the project has recorded the deaths of 33,583 people, including 2,421 in 2019. Due to the challenges of collecting information about these people and the contexts of their deaths, the true number of lives lost during migration is likely much higher. Missing Migrants Project records should only be viewed as indicative of the risks associated with migration, rather than representative of the true number of deaths across time or geography (see chart below). 

In Europe, two young Pakistani men, aged 19 and 32, drowned in Lake Sod, in Šid, Serbia, near the border with Croatia on 1 October. In Morocco, the remains of a young man were recovered from the landing gear of a Royal Air Maroc aircraft which landed at Mohamed V Airport in Casablanca on 30 September. The man, thought to be Guinean, likely hid in the wheel compartment of the plan which departed from Conakry, Guinea bound for Casablanca.  

On the US-Mexico border, four people lost their lives trying to cross the Río Bravo since last week’s update. The remains of two young men were recovered in Mexico’s border state of Tamaulipas by Mexican civil protection authorities on 27 and 28 September. On the US side of the border, US Border Patrol agents recovered the remains of an unidentified man near Eagle Pass, Texas on 29 September. Remains of yet another man were recovered on Tuesday, (1 October) in the river at Rancho Lemus, also near Eagle Pass, Texas. 

IOM is also looking into reports that the skeletal remains of two men were discovered in recent days on ranchland in Brooks County, Texas, where some 39 migrants have been reported dead this year. On 25 September authorities recovered the remains of one individual, along with a wallet with Mexican identification documents issued to a 32-year-old man named Cesar Antonio Hurtado Gutierrez. Two days later, remains of another victim were found on a ranch nearby.  

These latest border deaths bring to more than 600 the total number of fatalities recorded across four major migration corridors in the Americas. This compares with 460 at this point last year, an increase of more than 30 per cent. 

Missing Migrants Project data are compiled by IOM staff based at its Global Migration Data Analysis Centre 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.  

The report Fatal Journeys Volume 4, published 28 June, includes an overview of five years of Missing Migrants Project data (2014-2018) and an update on what is known about deaths during migration in 2019.  

MMP CHART HERE 

For latest arrivals and fatalities in the Mediterranean, click here. Learn more about the Missing Migrants Project.  

See contacts here

Language English Posted: Friday, October 4, 2019 - 16:25Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Missing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM Warns About 1,000 Deaths on Mediterranean

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:35

Geneva – The recent spate of Mediterranean Sea tragedies along all three migratory routes have brought the number of confirmed fatalities in 2019 to 994 men, women and children. An incident off Morocco this past weekend remains not fully accounted for. IOM is trying to confirm reports of as many as 40 migrants lost in that shipwreck.  

Fatalities this year will thus top 1,000 and 2019 will mark the sixth straight year IOM has recorded at least 1,000 deaths in the waters separating Europe from Africa and the Middle East – a period during which at least 15,000 victims have lost their lives in Mediterranean crossings. 

IOM Spokesperson Leonard Doyle said, “Amid a rising tide of anti-migrant sentiment in our politics worldwide, this shocking figure of nearly 1000 deaths is due in some measure to a hardening attitude and outright hostility towards migrants fleeing violence and poverty. This carnage at sea pains us all. It also shames us all.” 

On Monday, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project reported that as of 29 September, 659 migrants or refugees have perished on the Central Mediterranean route linking the coasts of Africa to Italian territorial waters, or almost two thirds of the total number of Mediterranean deaths recorded thus far in 2019. Another 66 victims have been reported on the Mediterranean’s Eastern route, linking Turkey and Syrian coasts to waters off Greece and Cyprus. IOM reported another 269 deaths in the waters between North Africa and Spain. 

Total Deaths in the Mediterranean 2019-2018

These data, tragic as they are, are the lowest number recorded since 2014. However, as shown in the link above, this drop is linked mostly to the reduction in the number of people attempting the crossing, rather than an improvement on the safety of this route. The Mediterranean Sea crossing remains the deadliest known migration route worldwide, indicating that safe alternatives are urgently needed for migrants seeking a better life.  

The confirmation at 1,000 recorded Mediterranean Sea deaths at this point marks the latest IOM has reported 1,000 fatalities in the six years since IOM launched its Missing Migrants Project. In three of the past five years (2015, 2016, 2017), IOM recorded 1,000 Mediterranean Sea deaths before the 18th of April. In the other two years, 2014 and 2018, the 1,000 mark was reached, respectively, in July and June. 

Missing Migrants Project researchers noted that over 2,300 deaths on the Central Mediterranean route have been recorded since the start of 2018, despite a drastic drop in the total number of migrants and refugees on that corridor. So far in 2019, barely 7,000 migrants arrived in Italy via this route, in addition to the 23,370 in 2018, plus nearly another 7,000 intercepted at sea and returned to Libya.  

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project also noted this week that while the 1,000 fatalities recorded mark a seventh year of mass tragedies in the Mediterranean, other parts of the world are becoming increasingly deadly for migrants. 

As of Tuesday, IOM has recorded at least 596 deaths of migrants along migratory corridors in the Americas, putting 2019 on track to be the fastest to 600 known deaths since IOM began recording these statistics in 2014.  

In three of the six years since IOM began counting deaths during migration – 2014, 2015 and 2018 – 600 deaths were not recorded during the entire year. In 2016, when 729 migrant deaths were recorded in the Americas, the 600 mark was not reached until 24 October. In 2017, a year when 680 migrants died in transit, the 600 mark was reached on 19 December. 

Missing Migrants Project data are compiled by IOM staff based at its Global Migration Data Analysis Centre 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.  

The report Fatal Journeys Volume 4, published 28 June, includes an overview of five years of Missing Migrants Project data (2014-2018) and an update on what is known about deaths during migration in 2019.  

For more information, please contact Joel Millman at IOM HQ, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int 

Div Table styles are a great way to layout website sections on the page! Make sure you bookmark this useful free online HTML tool!

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:33Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Missing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia: 

Mediterranean migrant deaths to top 1,000 for sixth straight year.  

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Three Months After Tajoura Airstrike, IOM Renews Calls for Urgent Action

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:32

Tripoli – Three months after the airstrike on the Tajoura detention centre that tragically killed 53 migrants and left over 130 injured, vulnerable migrants returned from sea continue to be taken to this facility. The bombed detention centre remains operational to this day, despite urgent and persistent calls to close Tajoura, especially due to its proximity to a military location.  

“While we welcome the Libyan government’s plan to close the three detention centres: Tajoura, Misrata and Souq Al Khamis, this plan needs to be transformed immediately into action to avoid further tragedies like Tajoura from recurring,” said Federico Soda, IOM Chief of Mission in Libya. 

“The International Organization for Migration renews its urgent call for the end of arbitrary detention in Libya, in a gradual orderly manner, that guarantees the safety of all detainees,” said Soda, adding that alternative solutions must be established and adopted as a matter of urgency to put an end to the intolerable suffering of thousands of migrants.  

IOM continues to provide a safe and dignified way from which migrants wishing to return home can benefit. The Voluntary Humanitarian Return programme has managed to provide return assistance to over 47,000 vulnerable migrants wishing to leave Libya since 2015. Some 7,200 stranded migrants so far have left this year, of those 27 had been kept in the Tajoura facility just since the July airstrike.  

So far this year, over 6,200 migrants were rescued at sea and returned to Libya. Many of them were placed in arbitrary detention while others were released into areas where armed conflict continues and where these migrants—and as many as 100,000 others—remain vulnerable to further risk of kidnapping and trafficking at the hands of smugglers. 

On Sunday 29 September, 71 migrants were returned to Libyan shore after spending more than two days floating in a rubber dinghy when their craft’s engine failed. This incident and several tragic shipwrecks recorded this year highlight the need for increased search and rescue capacity in the Mediterranean, disembarkation at safe ports and, in the absence of state-led search and rescue operations, the lifting of sanctions on NGOs that conduct lifesaving work in the Central Mediterranean.  

  

For more information please contact SafaMsehli at IOM HQ, Tel: +41766133175, Email:smsehli@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:31Image: Region-Country: LibyaThemes: Community StabilizationDefault: Multimedia: 

Tajoura detention centre after the airstrike in July. Photo: IOM 

Footage by IOM Libya on Wednesday 3 July, after an airstrike that killed at 53 people in Tajoura detention centre, outside Tripoli. 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

‘A Region on the Move': Over 8m Remain Internally Displaced in East and Horn of Africa

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:32

Nairobi – Over half of all movements observed in the first six month of 2019 through flow monitoring in the East and Horn of Africa (EHoA) were motivated by economic reasons, and yet over 8m people remain internally displaced. This is according to a new edition of ‘A Region on the Move’, a report that provides an analysis of the mixed migration movement trends affecting the region.   

The report is produced by the International Organization for Migration (IOM). It notes that population movements in the region remain extremely dynamic as people moved in and out of situations of vulnerability.   

During the first six months of the year, an estimated 8.1 million remained internally displaced and 3.5 million refugees and asylum-seekers were hosted in the region as conflict and climatic events put pressure on the most fragile communities.   

While conflict-induced displacement decreased, intercommunal violence became more frequent in Ethiopia, Somalia and South Sudan. Furthermore, a severe drought was declared in the region in May, particularly affecting Somalia, northern Kenya, southeastern Ethiopia, northern Uganda, and Djibouti.   

‘A Region on the Move’ alsocombines? information on migration routes, migrant profiles, socio-economic drivers and protection challenges. Humanitarian evacuations from Yemen, returns from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and information on Migration Response Centres – assistance facilities for migrants in distress – are also presented in the report.  

Of the more than 390,000 movements observed in 2019 through flow monitoring in the region, 57 per cent were motivated by economic reasons. Most migration was observed along the Eastern route (61%), followed by the Horn of Africa route (35%), the Northern route (2%) and the Southern route (2%).  

The Eastern route is used by migrants intending to travel to Yemen, the Middle East and beyond while the Horn of Africa route accounts for intra-regional movements. The Northern route is for those travelling to Libya and Egypt, and onwards to Europe while the Southern Route takes migrants to South Africa.  

Along the Eastern route, more than 84,000 migrants’ crossings to Yemen were recorded, a very slight decrease from the same period in 2018. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, while continuing to attract young migrants eager to find economic opportunities, returned at least 57,843 Ethiopian nationals, 29,419 Yemeni and 2,284 Somali to their countries of origin in 2019 alone.  

Commenting on the situation of vulnerable migrants along the different migratory routes, Mohammed Abdiker, Regional Director of IOM’s Regional Office for the East and Horn of Africa, said: “IOM is committed to supporting member states in the region in managing migration with particular focus on promoting developmental aspects like job creation in migrant sending communities to address the root causes of irregular migration. Meanwhile, protection of migrants remains a firm priority against the scourge of human smuggling and trafficking.” 

  

Among the report’s major highlights:  

  • With over 3 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) as of March 2019, the Government of Ethiopia launched a nation-wide return process in April through the Ministry of Peace and the National Disaster Risk Management Commission;  
  • In South Sudan, the seven-month period post the revitalized peace agreement accounted for 45 per cent of the estimated 1.2 million returnees, but as indicated by movement dynamics in and out of Protection of Civilian sites, returns are fragile;  
  • Displacement in Burundi fell by more than 15 per cent, decreasing from 134,054 IDPs in January to 113,067 IDPs as of June 2019, mainly due to increased return and local integration;  
  • Aid agencies, in collaboration with the Government of Somalia, launched a Drought Impact Response Plan in June 2019, targeting 4.5 million people for an overall funding requirement of USD 685 million over a 7 months period;  
  • From January to June 2019, 1,631 new cases of Ebola were recorded in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, bringing the total to 2,339 cases by the end of the reporting period and on 11 June the Ugandan Ministry of Health confirmed the cross-border spread of the outbreak;  
  • Similar to 2018, the vast majority of the more than 84,000 migrants’ arrivals in Yemen were of Ethiopian nationality (90%), followed by Somalis (10%) and 5 per cent were unaccompanied migrant children;  
  • Returns of Ethiopians, Sudanese, Yemeni and Somali in the thousands every month by the Government in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia did not deter migratory movements;  
  • Humanitarian evacuations from Yemen continued, with 3,046 Ethiopians airlifted by IOM from Aden and Sana’a to Ethiopia. In collaboration with UNHCR, 1,009 Somali refugees were assisted from Aden to a reception centre in Berbera in the first half of the year;  
  • The number of migrants from the EHoA  arriving by sea in Greece, Italy and Spain decreased by almost 80 per cent compared to the first half of 2018 (from 3,011 in 2018 to 635 in 2019).  

These and other trends in migrant movements are studied by the Regional Data Hub (RDH) which was established in early 2018 at the IOM Regional Office for EHoA, under the EU-IOM EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration in the Horn of Africa. The RDH, DTM and flow monitoring activities are now also funded by the Government of the Netherlands and Danish International Agency. 

 The RDH aims to support evidence-based strategic and policy level discussion on migration through a combined set of initiatives. These include: strengthening regional primary and secondary data collection and analysis; increasing Information management capacity across countries; providing technical support to ensure harmonization and interoperability of key methodologies used to monitor population mobility; and the engagement of key stakeholders and governmental counterparts in migration dialogue and consultation.  

Recent publications from the RDH can be found on: https://ronairobi.iom.int/regional-data-hub-rdh

For more information, please contact at the IOM Regional Office in Nairobi: 

Laura NistriTel: +254 204 221 000, Email: lnistri@iom.int 

Wilson Johwa, Tel: +254 701 838 029, Email: wjohwa@iom.int  

Use the online HTML editor to maximize your web content composing efficiency.

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:30Image: Region-Country: KenyaThemes: Internally Displaced PersonsDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM distributes shelter materials and blankets to displaced people in Gedeb, Ethiopia. Photo:IOM/Olivia Headon 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Latest IOM Study on Migration Trends in Senegal Explains Peak Arrivals in Spain

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:32

Dakar – While Senegal is a key transit country for many West Africans traveling to Europe, the country is also a land of departure. Thousands of Senegalese migrate in search of better economic opportunities in Europe.  

In 2018, the Western Mediterranean Route (WMR) – from West Africa towards Spain – became the most frequently used route into Europe with over 58,000 arrivals (compared to 5,300 in 2015 and 22,100 in 2017). Senegal was one of the top West African nationalities of arrivals in 2018, ranking behind Guinea, Mali, Côte d’Ivoire and The Gambia. 

Although 46 per cent of the migration flows from Senegal happen within West Africa – mainly to Mauritania, the Gambia, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Niger – Senegal is witnessing an increase of departures from its coasts towards Spain since 2016. 

To better understand the phenomenon, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) with the support of the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) and in collaboration with the Government of Senegal and the National Committee for Refugees, Repatriated and Displaced Persons (CNRRPD) presented on 26 September its latest research study on New Migration Dynamics in Senegal

Irregular migration along the WMR remains a predominantly young male phenomenon (average age of 31 years old). The study reveals that 57 per cent are married and that 36 per cent attended primary school and 31 per cent Koranic school. Over 70 per cent have monthly incomes of between 50,000 and 150,000 FCFA (between 83 and 250 USD), mainly coming from fishing and agriculture. The study also reveals that 45 per cent of people who have taken this route have already tried to migrate. 

The study shows that the recent sea departures for Spain do not follow the same pace as the one observed in 2006 when over 41,000 people arrived in Spain (of which 31,000 to the Canary Islands). However, the recent events confirm that the dangerous conditions in which migrants usually travel and the reinforcement of border controls in the countries of departure, transit and destination, have led to a change of migratory routes explaining the resumption of the Western route, the report says. 

“Migration is a constantly evolving phenomenon,” said Bakary Doumbia, IOM Chief of Mission in Senegal. “Today’s workshop shows the importance of better understanding the current migration shifts. Thanks to this type of research, IOM together with the Government of Senegal will be able to contribute to the development of recommendations to ensure migrants’ protection in Senegal and to respond to the phenomenon in the areas of departure and return,” he added. 

Among the key recommendations presented at the workshop, IOM stressed the need to strengthen data collection and analysis along the main migration hubs; to raise awareness on the risks of irregular migration at the local level through events organized by community leaders; and to increase the people’s knowledge of legal migration pathways already existing. 

The workshop was attended by representatives of the Government of Senegal, including some of the members of the CNRRPD, the Directorate General of External Intelligence (DGRE), the Directorate General of Internal Intelligence (DGRI), the Directorate of Air and Border Police (DPAF), the National Agency for Statistics and Demography (ANSD), the National Anti-Trafficking Unit (CNLTP) and the National Agency for the Promotion of Youth Employment (ANPEJ) and representatives of the Spanish Embassy, the World Bank, NGOs and researchers. 

The study was funded by the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development in the framework of the project Safety, Support and Solutions in the Central Mediterranean Route

For more information, please contact CheikhMbackéSène at IOM Senegal, Tel: +221 77 423 91 98Email: cmsene@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:25Image: Region-Country: SenegalThemes: Migration and DevelopmentDefault: Multimedia: 

Since 2018, the Western Mediterranean route has seen the largest influx of migrants trying to reach Europe with over 58,000 arrivals in Spain. Photo: IOM. 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM, UNHCR Support Resettlement of Refugees in South America

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:32

Brasília  Representatives from the Governments of Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay participated in a roundtable discussion last week (25-26/09) to take stock of the Emerging Resettlement Countries Joint Support Mechanism (ERCM), a joint initiative of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR). 

With the participation of governments, civil society, and host communities, ERCM has promoted in these countries, the strengthening of legal frameworks and selection procedures, the capacity building of resettlement institutions and the establishment of new forms of financing for this important lasting solution for refugees from around the world. 

ERCM member countries, with the support from IOM, UNHCR and their donors, are consolidating their resettlement processes by improving national and local reception and integration structures, promoting the self-sufficiency of resettled families and contributing to host communities. 

“Resettlement is an important protection tool. That is why we work in cooperation with governments, civil society and other partners to implement various resettlement, relocation, and humanitarian admission visa mechanisms in various countries,” explained IOM Chief of Mission in Brazil, Stéphane Rostiaux. “In 2018, for example, IOM supported around 30 countries in the implementation of these mechanisms, through which 95,000 refugees and migrants in vulnerable situations were assisted,” Rostiaux added. 

Participating countries examined good practices and identified possibilities for continuing their resettlement programmes. During the event, recommendations were made for the sustainability of resettlement programmes and for the establishment of complementary protection pathways for refugees in these countries. Many achievements were highlighted by participants during the round table. 

Brazil highlighted the implementation of the first resettlement programme funded with public resources, which has benefited refugee families from Central America. It has also been possible to advance in the development of a legal framework for resettlement and enable governments and other partners at the municipal level and in the host communities. 

In Argentina, ERCM has contributed to strengthening the legal framework and structuring selection procedures and guidance and health services by consolidating a community resettlement funding programme and a network of civil society institutions involved in this sponsorship modality – especially in attention to Syrian refugees. 

In Chile, the leadership and coordination of the government in implementing its resettlement programme achieved the integration and self-sufficiency of resettled refugees. The ERCM supported the selection and transportation of refugee families, as well as the strengthening of national and local reception and integration structures. 

Although not yet a formal member of ERCM, Uruguay has received support from UNHCR and IOM to improve family selection, transportation and reception processes, benefiting various nationalities. 

“ERCM is an initiative that has allowed us to build and strengthen resettlement in this region of South America. Much remains to be built, and we look forward to working together to continue to provide safe international protection environments for refugees, where they can access their rights and rebuild their lives in peace and in community,” said UNHCR Brazil Representative, José Egas. 

Possible ways to continue resettlement programmes were discussed and presented during the roundtable. Expanding solutions, including complementary resettlement avenues, focused on sharing responsibility – one of the central objectives of the Global Refugee Compact, signed by the United Nations in 2018. 

Planning for the next steps aims at greater engagement of different institutions with resettlement, from local, national and regional governments, to civil society, academia and the private sector. 

The event was attended by representatives of the donor countries of this initiative: The United States, Portugal, United Kingdom and Sweden, as well as other countries supporting similar initiatives, such as Canada and the European Union. Representatives of UNHCR, IOM, civil society organizations and local governments also participated in the roundtable. 

The Emerging Resettlement Countries Joint Support Mechanism is a three-year joint initiative of UNHCR and IOM, implemented in Argentina, Brazil, and Chile to provide technical and financial support to countries in establishing and strengthening resettlement programmes to ensure safe solutions for refugees and those in need of protection. 

For more information, please contact Juliana Hack, IOM Brasilia, Tel: + 55 61 3771 3772 Email: jhack@iom.int  

The online instant HTML converter tools make a great resource that will help you a lot in your work.

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:20Image: Region-Country: BrazilThemes: ResettlementDefault: Multimedia: 

Government representatives from Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay participating in a roundtable discussion on the Emerging Resettlement Countries Joint Support Mechanism (ERCM). Photo: IOM 

Government representatives from Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay participating in a roundtable discussion on the Emerging Resettlement Countries Joint Support Mechanism (ERCM). Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Ethiopia Embarks on Ambitious Roadmap to Implement Global Compact for Migration

Tue, 10/01/2019 - 10:32

Addis Ababa – The Government of Ethiopia formally launched its implementation of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), following a two-day consultation meeting held last week (25-26/09) in Addis Ababa where more than 70 representatives drawn from a wide range of stakeholders met to identify key priorities from the 23 GCM objectives. 

Present were government agencies, local and international non-governmental organizations, faith-based organizations, the media, the UN Country Team and the UN Migration Network Secretariat. 

This is part of a round of consultations currently being held in countries covered by the Better Migration Management (BMM) programme funded by the European Union. They aim to provide a platform for governments and relevant stakeholders in East Africa to identify and redefine their priorities in the implementation of GCM objectives.  

Leul Kahsay, Assistant Attorney General and Head of Office of the Attorney General of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, congratulated the National Anti-Trafficking and Smuggling Taskforce and IOM for organizing the meeting, and reaffirmed the Government of Ethiopia’s commitment to a whole-of-government and whole-of-society approach in identifying priorities and developing national plans on migration.  

Kahsay said, “Ethiopia was one of the most notable mixed migration countries in the world […] in an era of unprecedented mobility, being a country of origin, transit and destination for mixed migrants from the region and from within. Therefore, this consultation will provide a platform for government and other stakeholders to provide inputs into the country’s GCM implementation plan.” 

Ethiopia is one of the 152 UN Member States that endorsed the first ever GCM to address all aspects of international migration, adopted in December 2018. The country has taken a leading role in the East and Horn of Africa region in adopting policy measures to facilitate regular migration, as well as to address the challenges posed by irregular migration.  

The members of the United Nations Network for Migration in Ethiopia (UN MNE), formerly UN Migration Working Group, supported the dialogue by facilitating presentations and moderating discussions.  

The UN MNE brings together more than 19 UN agencies, programmes and funds with migration management mandates, and aims to ensure effective, timely and coordinated system-wide support to the Government of Ethiopia to ensure safe, orderly and regular migration. 

Civil society was represented at the consultation by more than ten local and international NGOs working with migrants and internally displaced persons. Their representatives expressed a strong desire to collaborate to ensure Ethiopia’s successful and coherent implementation of the GCM. 

As part of a raft of measures to relax the political space in the country, Ethiopia is currently amending the proclamation governing the operations of civil society organizations. Officials from the Attorney General’s office reiterated that the new law would give organizations wider space to contribute.  

Jonathan Prentice, coordinator for the UN Migration Network’s Startup Fund for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, explained the aims of the recently established pooled fund, which he said will soon be available to support initiatives in the area of migration management.  

The priority GCM objectives and activities identified by delegates are being compiled into a draft report of certain recommendations and will be submitted to the National Anti-Trafficking and Smuggling Taskforce for endorsement.  

The Taskforce currently works as the focal structure for migration management issues and will form the basis for establishment of a National Coordination Mechanism on migration in Ethiopia.  

In her closing remarks, Maureen Achieng, IOM Ethiopia Chief of Mission and Representative to the AU, IGAD and UNECA, commended the Taskforce and IOM for bringing together a variety of actors to define the country’s migration priorities.  

For more information please contact at IOM Ethiopia, Malambo Moonga, Tel: +251-11 557 1707 (Ext. 1427) or +251-960 36 78 21, Email: mmoonga@iom.int or Eric Mazango Tel: +251-11 557 1707 (Ext. 1456), Email: emazango@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - 16:11Image: Region-Country: EthiopiaThemes: Global Compact on MigrationDefault: Multimedia: 

Maureen Achieng, IOM Chief of Mission to Ethiopia and Rep to the AU, IGAD & UNECA speaking at the GCM Consultation meeting in Addis Ababa. Photo: IOM 

A delegate contributes at the GCM Consultation meeting in Ethiopia. Photo: IOM 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM in Turkey and Greece Respond to Surge in Humanitarian Needs as Migrant Numbers Rise

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 10:32

Ankara/Athens – At the International Organization for Migration (IOM)’s Western Turkey warehouse in the port city of Izmir, stocks of basic supplies – food, water, blankets, shoes, and clothing – are nearly depleted.  

IOM Turkey’s Mediterranean Response Teams have been working round the clock since July to bring basic help to the thousands of migrants who fail in their bid to cross the Aegean Sea to the Greek islands, 10 short kilometres away. 

The Turkish Coast Guard reports that the number of migrants and refugees attempting to cross the Aegean from Turkey to Greece has steadily increased, while being still far lower than 2015’s peaks. IOM Turkey’s Migrant Presence Monitoring Programme, which tracks migratory flows across the country, also has observed an overall increase in the movement of migrants.   

In Greece, within sight of the daily maritime drama, IOM is working with authorities coping with the increasing number of arrivals. According to official data from the Greek authorities, since the beginning of September more than 5,000 refugees and migrants have crossed the Greek sea borders, a sharp increase over last year’s figures. 

The main nationalities trying to cross are Afghans and Syrians, both groups fleeing continued volatility in their home countries. In August, Afghans made up the majority of crossers, while Syrians made up another 35 per cent. Together, through the first eight months of 2019, citizens of those two countries represent over 60 per cent of all irregular arrivals entering Greece by sea. 

IOM’s Chief of Mission in Turkey, Lado Gvilava, said: “We are, of course, concerned by developments which are placing migrants in situations of great vulnerability. It is particularly harrowing to see the number of women and children taking these perilous journeys.”  

Since the beginning of 2019, some 36,209 migrants have crossed into Greece from Turkey. Meanwhile, there are 29,000 migrants and asylum seekers on the North Eastern Aegean islands, more than three times the preferred capacity of the existing reception and identification centres.   

IOM Greece coordinates closely with the Greek authorities to add accommodations on the mainland and recently supported the transfer of 1,500 vulnerable asylum seekers from Lesvos to temporary facilities in Northern Greece.  

“IOM Greece is concerned about overpopulation on the Greek islands and is supporting the authorities in urgent efforts to increase places on the mainland to accommodate the vulnerable migrants,” said Gianluca Rocco, IOM’s Chief of Mission in Greece. “Approximately 4,000 new accommodation places will become available in the coming weeks which will allow more vulnerable groups to leave the Greek Islands.” 

So far this year, 59 deaths were reported along the Eastern Mediterranean route and by the end of the year this number is projected to exceed those recorded in either 2017 or 2018.  

For more information please contact: 

In Turkey: Lanna Walsh, Tel: +90 533 698 7285, Email:  lwalsh@iom.int 

In Greece: Christine Nikolaidou, Tel: +30 2109919040 (Ext 248), Email: cnikolaidou@iom.int 

In Vienna: Joe Lowry, Tel: +43660 3776404, Email: jlowry@iom.int  

In Brussels: Ryan Schroeder, Tel: +32 492 25 02 34, Email:  rschroeder@iom.int 

 

Language English Posted: Friday, September 27, 2019 - 16:35Image: Region-Country: GreeceTurkeyThemes: Migration GovernanceDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM Scales Up Response to Hurricane Dorian Damage in The Bahamas

Fri, 09/27/2019 - 10:32

Nassau – During the next weeks, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) will increase its support to survivors of Hurricane Dorian by managing shelters, providing essential household items to displaced families, supporting debris removal operations and deploying its Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) to provide accurate information on the needs of the affected population.  

This support will be possible thanks to USD 1.9 million granted this week by the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) of the US Agency for International Development (USAID), and the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).  

With these funds, IOM will continue supporting the Government of The Bahamas, in the wake of the catastrophe that has left 53 dead, 600 missing and tens of thousands displaced to less affected areas of the country.  

“Many of the households currently residing in the collective centres did not bring enough items with them to meet their basic needs. The facilities are not equipped to cope with prolonged inhabitation of large amounts of people and lack resources to meet the basic needs of the affected population,” said Jan-Willem Wegdam, head of the IOM Emergency Response Team in The Bahamas. “IOM will manage shelters and provide training in camp management and coordination and, if necessary, equipment of collective centres, upgrades, and repairs to existing buildings, and provision of latrines, bathing stations, and non-food item kits.”  

To ease the return of displaced families, IOM will aid Bahamian authorities in debris and rubble removal operations, increasing access to homes and critical infrastructure. IOM’s debris management activities will focus on clearing of roads and drainage channels, using a combination of partners, contractors and, where necessary, cash for work. IOM will collect debris and rubble from collection points in public space and take it to centres for triage and onwards disposal. Care will be taken with regard to specific debris such as cars or boats that are found on public ground and may have a recycle value.  

Where families can return to their homes but require tools and materials to carry out small-scale rehabilitations, IOM will provide toolkits and necessary training to family members. This intervention will prevent the overcrowding of collective centres and support households returning home as quickly as possible, when safe to do so.  

Accurate, reliable and up-to-date information will be available through the roll-out of IOM’s DTM activities and coordination to identify, register and monitor displaced households, particularly in the most affected communities in Grand Bahama, the Abaco Islands, and New Providence islands.  

DTM will provide Bahamian authorities and international partners with updated demographics and population data for residents in collective centres as well as in communities hosting the displaced population.  

IOM will also support the Bahamian Ministry of Social Services and Urban Development to monitor the missing persons list. 

For more information please contact Jorge Gallo at the IOM Regional Office for Central America, North America and the Caribbean, Tel: +506 7203 6536, Email: jgallo@iom.int 

Language English Posted: Friday, September 27, 2019 - 16:40Image: Region-Country: BahamasThemes: IOMDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM will aid Bahamian authorities in debris and rubble removal operations, increasing access to homes, and critical infrastructure. Photo: IOM / Jorge Gallo 

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Pages