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Updated: 6 min 22 sec ago

UN Migration Agency Releases Recommendations to Incoming EU Council Presidency Bulgaria

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 04:35

Brussels – A new visa for vulnerable migrants, the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), the Common European Asylum System, and voluntary return and reintegration (AVRR) policies are the focus of recommendations that IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is releasing today (06/12) ahead of Bulgaria’s tenure at the helm of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) beginning in January 2018.

Eugenio Ambrosi, IOM Regional Director for the European Union, Norway and Switzerland presented IOM’s recommendations to the Bulgarian Government during a visit to Sofia. He said the Bulgarian Presidency will lead the Council of the EU at a pivotal time, as the need for intensified cooperation between countries, better protection of migrants, and more safe and regular migration pathways have captured global attention.

“Bulgaria will be leading the rotating EU Presidency through a critical period in the first six months of 2018. Migration challenges will remain considerable in the Mediterranean and in neighbouring regions, and will continue to impact the European asylum system. At the same time, migration policy is being defined internationally in the lead up to next year’s Global Compact for Migration,” said Ambrosi today in Brussels.  

“Our recommendations are rooted in IOM’s conviction that migration is not a phenomenon that should be stopped or managed on a crisis footing, but a human reality that must be governed with political courage, evidence-based vision, and a human-centered approach,” he said.   

IOM’s new recommendations paper sets out four key points for the Bulgarian Presidency. First, IOM calls on the EU and its Member States to take a leading role in the negotiations for the GCM to ensure the adoption of an ambitious agreement that becomes a unifying framework of common principles, commitments and understanding among Member States on all aspects of migration. 

The second recommendation is for the realization of a reformed Common European Asylum System (CEAS) which sets high standards of fairness and solidarity. Specifically, improvements to the relocation mechanism – such as making it permanent and automatic – and the adoption of a common and unified approach to resettlement through a Union Resettlement Framework are two crucial elements in this regard.  

While the CEAS focuses on international protection, many people who are not seeking asylum on the migration routes still have specific protection needs. IOM therefore proposes in its third recommendation the creation of a new EU visa for the most vulnerable migrants. The visa would help Member States to manage the movement of eligible migrants with specific protection needs, and to uphold their fundamental rights. It would also help to strengthen external border and identity management, which can bring improved security to both migrants and states.  

Finally, IOM calls on the incoming Presidency to ensure a rights-based, non-discriminatory and comprehensive approach in return and reintegration policies. Assisted voluntary return and reintegration (AVVR) is an indispensable part of a comprehensive approach to migration management. However, return migration should support, rather than define, an effective migration governance framework.

"IOM welcomes the Bulgarian Presidency's commitment to prioritizing migration. We are ready to support the Presidency and EU member states through its global expertise and operational tools to advance our joint commitment to improving global migration governance and ensuring that each and every migrant is assisted, with their fundamental rights upheld," said Ambrosi.

IOM's twice-yearly recommendations to the rotating EU Presidencies are guided by its Migration Governance Framework (MiGOF) which is the first, and so far only, global detailed articulation of planned and well-managed migration policies.

The six-month incumbent Presidents of the Council of the EU work together in groups of three in the interest of continuity and coherency. The current Presidential trio comprises Estonia (July/December 2017), Bulgaria (January/June 2018) and Austria (July/December 2018). The presidential representatives chair meetings at every level and propose the guidelines needed for the Council to take decisions.

IOM's recommendations can be downloaded here in PDF.

For more information please contact Radoslav Stamenkov at IOM Bulgaria, Tel: +359 886 177 053, Email:rstamenkov@iom.int, Ryan Schroeder Tel: +32 492 25 02 34, Email: rschroeder@iom.int or Sofiane Ouaret at the IOM EU Regional Office in Brussels, Tel: +32 2287 7120, Email: souaret@iom.int

Language English Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 11:23Image: Region-Country: BelgiumDefault: Multimedia: 

Migrants and refugees in the Greek island of Lesbos. Photo: Amanda Nero/UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

UN Migration Agency Releases Recommendations to Incoming EU Council Presidency Bulgaria

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 04:35

Brussels – A new visa for vulnerable migrants, the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), the Common European Asylum System, and voluntary return and reintegration (AVRR) policies are the focus of recommendations that IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is releasing today (06/12) ahead of Bulgaria’s tenure at the helm of the Presidency of the Council of the European Union (EU) beginning in January 2018.

Eugenio Ambrosi, IOM Regional Director for the European Union, Norway and Switzerland presented IOM’s recommendations to the Bulgarian Government during a visit to Sofia. He said the Bulgarian Presidency will lead the Council of the EU at a pivotal time, as the need for intensified cooperation between countries, better protection of migrants, and more safe and regular migration pathways have captured global attention.

“Bulgaria will be leading the rotating EU Presidency through a critical period in the first six months of 2018. Migration challenges will remain considerable in the Mediterranean and in neighbouring regions, and will continue to impact the European asylum system. At the same time, migration policy is being defined internationally in the lead up to next year’s Global Compact for Migration,” said Ambrosi today in Brussels.  

“Our recommendations are rooted in IOM’s conviction that migration is not a phenomenon that should be stopped or managed on a crisis footing, but a human reality that must be governed with political courage, evidence-based vision, and a human-centered approach,” he said.   

IOM’s new recommendations paper sets out four key points for the Bulgarian Presidency. First, IOM calls on the EU and its Member States to take a leading role in the negotiations for the GCM to ensure the adoption of an ambitious agreement that becomes a unifying framework of common principles, commitments and understanding among Member States on all aspects of migration. 

The second recommendation is for the realization of a reformed Common European Asylum System (CEAS) which sets high standards of fairness and solidarity. Specifically, improvements to the relocation mechanism – such as making it permanent and automatic – and the adoption of a common and unified approach to resettlement through a Union Resettlement Framework are two crucial elements in this regard.  

While the CEAS focuses on international protection, many people who are not seeking asylum on the migration routes still have specific protection needs. IOM therefore proposes in its third recommendation the creation of a new EU visa for the most vulnerable migrants. The visa would help Member States to manage the movement of eligible migrants with specific protection needs, and to uphold their fundamental rights. It would also help to strengthen external border and identity management, which can bring improved security to both migrants and states.  

Finally, IOM calls on the incoming Presidency to ensure a rights-based, non-discriminatory and comprehensive approach in return and reintegration policies. Assisted voluntary return and reintegration (AVVR) is an indispensable part of a comprehensive approach to migration management. However, return migration should support, rather than define, an effective migration governance framework.

"IOM welcomes the Bulgarian Presidency's commitment to prioritizing migration. We are ready to support the Presidency and EU member states through its global expertise and operational tools to advance our joint commitment to improving global migration governance and ensuring that each and every migrant is assisted, with their fundamental rights upheld," said Ambrosi.

IOM's twice-yearly recommendations to the rotating EU Presidencies are guided by its Migration Governance Framework (MiGOF) which is the first, and so far only, global detailed articulation of planned and well-managed migration policies.

The six-month incumbent Presidents of the Council of the EU work together in groups of three in the interest of continuity and coherency. The current Presidential trio comprises Estonia (July/December 2017), Bulgaria (January/June 2018) and Austria (July/December 2018). The presidential representatives chair meetings at every level and propose the guidelines needed for the Council to take decisions.

IOM's recommendations can be downloaded here in PDF.

For more information please contact Radoslav Stamenkov at IOM Bulgaria, Tel: +359 886 177 053, Email:rstamenkov@iom.int, Ryan Schroeder Tel: +32 492 25 02 34, Email: rschroeder@iom.int or Sofiane Ouaret at the IOM EU Regional Office in Brussels, Tel: +32 2287 7120, Email: souaret@iom.int

Language English Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 11:23Image: Region-Country: BelgiumDefault: Multimedia: 

Migrants and refugees in the Greek island of Lesbos. Photo: Amanda Nero/UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Lost in Lebanon Opens Global Migration Film Festival

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 04:30

Geneva – The second edition of the Global Migration Film Festival opened yesterday (05/12) with the screening of Lost in Lebanon, at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland.

Addressing more than 350 attendees, Leonard Doyle, UN Migration Agency Head of Media and Communications introduced the film, announcing that this year, the Festival will present films in over 100 countries from Niger to Indonesia.

“This festival is a truly global event, sometimes taking place in venues like this, sometimes in a thousand-mile caravan driving through the desert from Agadez, Niger up to the border with Algeria, and sometimes in detention centers in Libya where migrants are suffering appallingly,” said Doyle.

Lost in Lebanon tells the stories of Sheik Abdo, Nemr, Reem and Mwafak, four Syrian refugees living in Lebanon. The documentary follows their struggle after leaving behind their friends and families, through the uncertainty that ensues when they lose their residency visas at the end of Lebanon’s open-door policy for refugees in early 2015, which rendered them unable to stay or return to their home country.

The four protagonists were not alone – by the end of 2016, 600,000 Syrians had lost their legal status in Lebanon. Despite the challenges, these characters remain committed to helping their displaced communities, whether by teaching young children at an informal school, offering counselling to fellow refugees, or sharing their artistic skills.

The film was followed by a panel discussion moderated by Riccardo Bocco, Professor of Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate Institute, with directors Georgia and Sophia Scott, and Pindie Stephen, IOM Integration Senior Specialist.

“As filmmakers, we open a window for you to look through, and as a viewer you can do your own research, or lobby your own governments to change policy,” said Sophia Scott. “This film can have a great impact, but we need to partner with organizations,” she added.

Asked about how this film impacts the work of IOM, Stephen praised the film as a tool to help dispel the many myths about refugees. “As I watched this film it reminded me of how important it is to have these tools to share with others… It’s amazing to see how much these refugees contribute to their own people,” said Stephen. “It can also serve to prepare communities that are receiving refugees and can help prepare for their integration challenges,” she added.

The Global Migration Film Festival, organized by IOM with support from DHL and other partners, showcases films that capture the promise and challenges of migration. It runs from 5 to 18 December, International Migrants Day.

A committee of international film professionals and migration specialists will select three winners from the Emerging Filmmakers category and one from the Professional Filmmakers category.

Each winner will receive USD 1,500. The award ceremony will take place on 18 December in Les Cinémas du Grütli, Geneva.

For more information, please contact IOM HQ:

Amanda Nero, Tel: +41227179482, Email: anero@iom.int

Jorge Galindo, Tel: +41227179205, Email: jgalindo@iom.int

Language English Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 11:23Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Multimedia: 

The second edition of the Global Migration Film Festival drew over 350 attendees during its opening in Geneva on 5 December 2017. Photo: Muse Mohammed/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

The second edition of the Global Migration Film Festival drew over 350 attendees during its opening in Geneva on 5 December 2017. Photo: Muse Mohammed/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Lost in Lebanon Opens Global Migration Film Festival

Wed, 12/06/2017 - 04:30

Geneva – The second edition of the Global Migration Film Festival opened yesterday (05/12) with the screening of Lost in Lebanon, at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland.

Addressing more than 350 attendees, Leonard Doyle, UN Migration Agency Head of Media and Communications introduced the film, announcing that this year, the Festival will present films in over 100 countries from Niger to Indonesia.

“This festival is a truly global event, sometimes taking place in venues like this, sometimes in a thousand-mile caravan driving through the desert from Agadez, Niger up to the border with Algeria, and sometimes in detention centers in Libya where migrants are suffering appallingly,” said Doyle.

Lost in Lebanon tells the stories of Sheik Abdo, Nemr, Reem and Mwafak, four Syrian refugees living in Lebanon. The documentary follows their struggle after leaving behind their friends and families, through the uncertainty that ensues when they lose their residency visas at the end of Lebanon’s open-door policy for refugees in early 2015, which rendered them unable to stay or return to their home country.

The four protagonists were not alone – by the end of 2016, 600,000 Syrians had lost their legal status in Lebanon. Despite the challenges, these characters remain committed to helping their displaced communities, whether by teaching young children at an informal school, offering counselling to fellow refugees, or sharing their artistic skills.

The film was followed by a panel discussion moderated by Riccardo Bocco, Professor of Anthropology and Sociology at the Graduate Institute, with directors Georgia and Sophia Scott, and Pindie Stephen, IOM Integration Senior Specialist.

“As filmmakers, we open a window for you to look through, and as a viewer you can do your own research, or lobby your own governments to change policy,” said Sophia Scott. “This film can have a great impact, but we need to partner with organizations,” she added.

Asked about how this film impacts the work of IOM, Stephen praised the film as a tool to help dispel the many myths about refugees. “As I watched this film it reminded me of how important it is to have these tools to share with others… It’s amazing to see how much these refugees contribute to their own people,” said Stephen. “It can also serve to prepare communities that are receiving refugees and can help prepare for their integration challenges,” she added.

The Global Migration Film Festival, organized by IOM with support from DHL and other partners, showcases films that capture the promise and challenges of migration. It runs from 5 to 18 December, International Migrants Day.

A committee of international film professionals and migration specialists will select three winners from the Emerging Filmmakers category and one from the Professional Filmmakers category.

Each winner will receive USD 1,500. The award ceremony will take place on 18 December in Les Cinémas du Grütli, Geneva.

For more information, please contact IOM HQ:

Amanda Nero, Tel: +41227179482, Email: anero@iom.int

Jorge Galindo, Tel: +41227179205, Email: jgalindo@iom.int

Language English Posted: Wednesday, December 6, 2017 - 11:23Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Multimedia: 

The second edition of the Global Migration Film Festival drew over 350 attendees during its opening in Geneva on 5 December 2017. Photo: Muse Mohammed/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM's Fatal Journeys Reveals How Data Collection on Missing Migrants Can Be Improved

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 10:19

Since 2014, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project has documented more than 25,000 migrant deaths and disappearances around the world. However, a new report released by IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) today indicates that this figure does not reflect the true number of deaths which occur during migration worldwide. In many regions of the world anecdotal and unofficial reports indicate that many more migrant deaths and disappearances occur than are recorded.

The new report, the second part of Fatal Journeys Volume 3: Improving data on missing migrants, provides an in-depth look at the challenges of collecting data on migrant fatalities in six regions: the Middle East and North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Central America, South America, and Europe and the Mediterranean. Each chapter also explores how data collection can be improved.

The many challenges specific to each region mean that data on migrant deaths may never be complete, however significant improvements could be made across the world. Fatal Journeys 3 makes five key recommendations based on the innovative methodologies discussed in part one, and the regional comparisons made in part two of the report:

1. Make better use of administrative data
Local, national and regional authorities should collect and publish data on migrant deaths and disappearances. These authorities should standardize collection procedures and methodologies so that the data might be more easily compared.

2. Promote survey-based data collection
In areas where few official data exist, survey-based data collection should include collecting eyewitness testimonies from migrants who have witnessed the deaths of their peers.

3. Explore new technologies
New and emerging data collection techniques and sources, such as big data, can improve the quality and coverage of data on missing migrants.

4. Work with civil society and families
The needs of families of missing migrants should be considered at all stages of data collection and processing of deceased migrants. Families and civil society groups can provide key information to aid the identification of migrants who have died or gone missing.

5. Improve data sharing
One of the most achievable ways to improved data on missing migrants worldwide is to improve communication between actors working on the issue. Data on missing migrants are often scattered and fragmented, and data sharing should be promoted wherever possible in order to maximize accuracy.

While the dangerous journeys of migrants travelling across the Mediterranean Sea have been widely reported since 2013, most migrant deaths likely occur in large unpatrolled spaces, and are not captured in the coverage of migration ‘crises’. The attention on the Mediterranean has led to better data on migrant deaths en route to Europe, but there is little public or policy awareness of the risks migrants encounter before they reach the coasts of Turkey and North Africa.
Improving data on migrant deaths is extremely important at a time when states are discussing how best to achieve safer migration. Building upon the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, which calls for safe, ordinary and regular migration, the Global Compact for Migration will be signed in 2018. Gathering more and better-quality data on deaths that occur during migration is essential to improving the evidence base for these policy discussions.
For further information, please refer to the full report, available here.

For further information you may also contact:

Frank Laczko, Director, IOM GMDAC, Berlin, Tel: +49 (0) 151 11676795 - Email: flaczko@iom.int
Julia Black, Missing Migrants Project Coordinator, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:30Image: Region-Country: GermanyThemes: Migration ResearchDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM's Fatal Journeys Reveals How Data Collection on Missing Migrants Can Be Improved

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 10:19

Since 2014, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project has documented more than 25,000 migrant deaths and disappearances around the world. However, a new report released by IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) today indicates that this figure does not reflect the true number of deaths which occur during migration worldwide. In many regions of the world anecdotal and unofficial reports indicate that many more migrant deaths and disappearances occur than are recorded.

The new report, the second part of Fatal Journeys Volume 3: Improving data on missing migrants, provides an in-depth look at the challenges of collecting data on migrant fatalities in six regions: the Middle East and North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Central America, South America, and Europe and the Mediterranean. Each chapter also explores how data collection can be improved.

The many challenges specific to each region mean that data on migrant deaths may never be complete, however significant improvements could be made across the world. Fatal Journeys 3 makes five key recommendations based on the innovative methodologies discussed in part one, and the regional comparisons made in part two of the report:

1. Make better use of administrative data
Local, national and regional authorities should collect and publish data on migrant deaths and disappearances. These authorities should standardize collection procedures and methodologies so that the data might be more easily compared.

2. Promote survey-based data collection
In areas where few official data exist, survey-based data collection should include collecting eyewitness testimonies from migrants who have witnessed the deaths of their peers.

3. Explore new technologies
New and emerging data collection techniques and sources, such as big data, can improve the quality and coverage of data on missing migrants.

4. Work with civil society and families
The needs of families of missing migrants should be considered at all stages of data collection and processing of deceased migrants. Families and civil society groups can provide key information to aid the identification of migrants who have died or gone missing.

5. Improve data sharing
One of the most achievable ways to improved data on missing migrants worldwide is to improve communication between actors working on the issue. Data on missing migrants are often scattered and fragmented, and data sharing should be promoted wherever possible in order to maximize accuracy.

While the dangerous journeys of migrants travelling across the Mediterranean Sea have been widely reported since 2013, most migrant deaths likely occur in large unpatrolled spaces, and are not captured in the coverage of migration ‘crises’. The attention on the Mediterranean has led to better data on migrant deaths en route to Europe, but there is little public or policy awareness of the risks migrants encounter before they reach the coasts of Turkey and North Africa.
Improving data on migrant deaths is extremely important at a time when states are discussing how best to achieve safer migration. Building upon the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants, which calls for safe, ordinary and regular migration, the Global Compact for Migration will be signed in 2018. Gathering more and better-quality data on deaths that occur during migration is essential to improving the evidence base for these policy discussions.
For further information, please refer to the full report, available here.

For further information you may also contact:

Frank Laczko, Director, IOM GMDAC, Berlin, Tel: +49 (0) 151 11676795 - Email: flaczko@iom.int
Julia Black, Missing Migrants Project Coordinator, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:30Image: Region-Country: GermanyThemes: Migration ResearchDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 164,779 in 2017; Deaths Reach 3,086

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:51

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 164,779 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017 through 3 December, with just over 70 per cent arriving in Italy and the remainder divided between Greece, Cyprus and Spain. This compares with 351,076 arrivals across the region through the same period last year.

IOM Rome reported Monday (4 December) that, according to Ministry of Interior figures, 117,120, or just 78 through the first three days of this month. For the year to date, totals are approximately 32% fewer than arrived by sea to Italy at this point last year.
Since 1 August 2017 a total of 21,903 men, women and children have arrived in Italy by sea from North Africa. That amount is nearly identical to the totals arriving in August alone both in 2015, and again last year. Overall, the months of August-November 2017 witnessed roughly one-quarter of the migrant total (79, 615) that arrived in Italy last year during a similar period and less than half the total (50,667) arriving in 2015 during the same months (see chart below).

IOM Cyprus'  Dimitrios Tsagalas reported Tuesday morning on a boat arrival with migrants on board, spotted at the Kato Pyrgos area in Pafos. IOM Cyprus said the boat was observed by authorities at 01:00 am on 05 December and was said to be carrying 38 migrants (33 men, one woman and four children) all of Syrian nationality. These migrants were transferred to the city of Polis in the Pafos area for health and police checks at 03:00 AM. Later today they are expected to be transported to the Purnara Reception Centre.     
IOM’s Missing Migrant Project (MMP) confirmed that on Thursday, 30 November, the Moroccan Coast Guard rescued six occupants of a boat reportedly with 34 migrants on board. Today’s report treats as presumed dead the 28 missing migrants, reportedly all from sub-Saharan Africa, a group said to have included four women, 23 men and one child.
IOM also updated a report of a shipwreck in the Central Mediterranean which occurred on 23 November, in which UNHCR reported an additional 20 migrants of unknown origin were lost at sea. At least one was an Eritrean woman, who was reported dead by family members who were rescued.
These losses bring to 3,086 the total number of men, women and children lost on the Mediterranean through 3,337 days of the current year. That is an average daily death toll of just over 11 people per day. Last year, at this time, Missing Migrants recorded 4,757 victims on the Mediterranean, or over 14 per day.
Worldwide, Missing Migrant Project has recorded the deaths of 5,194 people during migration in 2017. In addition to the 48 new deaths reported in the Western and Central Mediterranean, MMP learned that in Turkey, ten Syrians – including six children – died this past weekend in a minibus accident. Eight more Syrians were injured in the accident, which occurred on Sunday in the Hatay district of Turkey. These deaths mark the third incident in the last two weeks in which IOM has recorded the deaths of migrants attempting to travel overland between Turkey and Greece.  (see chart below)
Missing Migrants Project (MMP) 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 missing migrants are collected, click here.

Latest Mediterranean Update infographic: http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/171205_Mediterranean_Update.pdf
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 at IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int
Kelly Namia, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 991 2174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Christine Petré, IOM Libya, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int
Ana Dodevska, IOM Spain, Tel: +34 91 445 7116, Email: ADODEVSKA@iom.int
Myriam Chabbi, IOM Tunisia, Tel :  +216 28 78 78 05 (mobile) office: +216 71 860 312 EXT. 109  Email: mchabbi@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:26Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 164,779 in 2017; Deaths Reach 3,086

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:51

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 164,779 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017 through 3 December, with just over 70 per cent arriving in Italy and the remainder divided between Greece, Cyprus and Spain. This compares with 351,076 arrivals across the region through the same period last year.

IOM Rome reported Monday (4 December) that, according to Ministry of Interior figures, 117,120, or just 78 through the first three days of this month. For the year to date, totals are approximately 32% fewer than arrived by sea to Italy at this point last year.
Since 1 August 2017 a total of 21,903 men, women and children have arrived in Italy by sea from North Africa. That amount is nearly identical to the totals arriving in August alone both in 2015, and again last year. Overall, the months of August-November 2017 witnessed roughly one-quarter of the migrant total (79, 615) that arrived in Italy last year during a similar period and less than half the total (50,667) arriving in 2015 during the same months (see chart below).

IOM Cyprus'  Dimitrios Tsagalas reported Tuesday morning on a boat arrival with migrants on board, spotted at the Kato Pyrgos area in Pafos. IOM Cyprus said the boat was observed by authorities at 01:00 am on 05 December and was said to be carrying 38 migrants (33 men, one woman and four children) all of Syrian nationality. These migrants were transferred to the city of Polis in the Pafos area for health and police checks at 03:00 AM. Later today they are expected to be transported to the Purnara Reception Centre.     
IOM’s Missing Migrant Project (MMP) confirmed that on Thursday, 30 November, the Moroccan Coast Guard rescued six occupants of a boat reportedly with 34 migrants on board. Today’s report treats as presumed dead the 28 missing migrants, reportedly all from sub-Saharan Africa, a group said to have included four women, 23 men and one child.
IOM also updated a report of a shipwreck in the Central Mediterranean which occurred on 23 November, in which UNHCR reported an additional 20 migrants of unknown origin were lost at sea. At least one was an Eritrean woman, who was reported dead by family members who were rescued.
These losses bring to 3,086 the total number of men, women and children lost on the Mediterranean through 3,337 days of the current year. That is an average daily death toll of just over 11 people per day. Last year, at this time, Missing Migrants recorded 4,757 victims on the Mediterranean, or over 14 per day.
Worldwide, Missing Migrant Project has recorded the deaths of 5,194 people during migration in 2017. In addition to the 48 new deaths reported in the Western and Central Mediterranean, MMP learned that in Turkey, ten Syrians – including six children – died this past weekend in a minibus accident. Eight more Syrians were injured in the accident, which occurred on Sunday in the Hatay district of Turkey. These deaths mark the third incident in the last two weeks in which IOM has recorded the deaths of migrants attempting to travel overland between Turkey and Greece.  (see chart below)
Missing Migrants Project (MMP) 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 missing migrants are collected, click here.

Latest Mediterranean Update infographic: http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/171205_Mediterranean_Update.pdf
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 at IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int
Kelly Namia, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 991 2174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Christine Petré, IOM Libya, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int
Ana Dodevska, IOM Spain, Tel: +34 91 445 7116, Email: ADODEVSKA@iom.int
Myriam Chabbi, IOM Tunisia, Tel :  +216 28 78 78 05 (mobile) office: +216 71 860 312 EXT. 109  Email: mchabbi@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:26Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

100 Days Since Start of Crisis, Needs of Rohingya Refugees, Local Community Continue to Grow

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:48

Cox’s Bazar – It is now over 100 days since an upsurge in violence in Myanmar’s Northern Rakhine State forced some 625,792 Rohingya refugees to flee into Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. The conditions of the congested settlements, where the refugees are now living, are extremely dire.

The impact of this influx can be felt widely in the already impoverished local communities living in the region, struggling to survive, such that the UN Humanitarian Response Plan aims to reach 300,000 members of the local community in need of assistance.

The water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) situation is not only of concern in the refugee settlements, where over 60 per cent of water is contaminated with E.coli, but also, in the local communities living nearby.

"Access to clean water and safe sanitation services is a problem for the communities hosting refugees in Cox's Bazar," said Alessandro Petrone, WASH Programme Manager for IOM's Rohingya Response. "A global and up to date WASH assessment providing a proper gaps analysis and an activities plan is urgently needed. IOM is developing a rated assessment tool and will deploy teams to the field in the coming days to support this work," said Petrone.

IOM, the UN Migration Agency, has constructed more than 3,800 latrines and 159 wells in six host community locations - Whykong, Palonkhali, Jaliapalong, Kutupalong, Rajapalong and Baharchora.

More than 30,000 host community members now have access to safe water and sanitation services. To ensure sustainability and to generate employment, IOM has trained and equipped local tube well caretakers.

Village Development Committees responsible for the overall management of these facilities were also established by IOM. Active community participation from the initial needs assessments to implementation and management has meant that facilities are well maintained and efficiently used.

Since 25 August,  IOM health teams in Cox’s Bazar have provided emergency and primary healthcare services to over 100,000 patients from the Rohingya and local Bangladeshi communities.

IOM supports 19 health facilities, nine of which provide services to both communities. At the community clinics located very close to the refugee settlements, including Kutupalong and Leda, approximately 30 per cent of patients seen are from the local Bangladeshi community. 

Under IOM’s outreach preventive programme, health promoters visit families in Ukhiya and Teknaf, sub-districts of Cox’s Bazar where the refugee settlements have developed, to register pregnant women and children, encourage and ensure antenatal and postnatal care visits, provide first aid care and refer complicated cases to IOM-supported centres for further treatment.

For more information, please contact

Fiona MacGregor at IOM Cox’s Bazar, Tel: +8801733335221, Email: fmacgregor@iom.int  

Shirin Ahkter at IOM Dhaka, Tel: +880 2 55044811-13, Email: sakhter@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:25Image: Region-Country: BangladeshThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMigration HealthRefugee and Asylum IssuesDefault: Multimedia: 

Men wait to be seen by the doctor at the IOM-supported Kutupalong Community Healthcare Clinic, which services both Rohingya refugees and the local Bangladesh community. Photot: Olivia Headon / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

100 Days Since Start of Crisis, Needs of Rohingya Refugees, Local Community Continue to Grow

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:48

Cox’s Bazar – It is now over 100 days since an upsurge in violence in Myanmar’s Northern Rakhine State forced some 625,792 Rohingya refugees to flee into Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. The conditions of the congested settlements, where the refugees are now living, are extremely dire.

The impact of this influx can be felt widely in the already impoverished local communities living in the region, struggling to survive, such that the UN Humanitarian Response Plan aims to reach 300,000 members of the local community in need of assistance.

The water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) situation is not only of concern in the refugee settlements, where over 60 per cent of water is contaminated with E.coli, but also, in the local communities living nearby.

"Access to clean water and safe sanitation services is a problem for the communities hosting refugees in Cox's Bazar," said Alessandro Petrone, WASH Programme Manager for IOM's Rohingya Response. "A global and up to date WASH assessment providing a proper gaps analysis and an activities plan is urgently needed. IOM is developing a rated assessment tool and will deploy teams to the field in the coming days to support this work," said Petrone.

IOM, the UN Migration Agency, has constructed more than 3,800 latrines and 159 wells in six host community locations - Whykong, Palonkhali, Jaliapalong, Kutupalong, Rajapalong and Baharchora.

More than 30,000 host community members now have access to safe water and sanitation services. To ensure sustainability and to generate employment, IOM has trained and equipped local tube well caretakers.

Village Development Committees responsible for the overall management of these facilities were also established by IOM. Active community participation from the initial needs assessments to implementation and management has meant that facilities are well maintained and efficiently used.

Since 25 August,  IOM health teams in Cox’s Bazar have provided emergency and primary healthcare services to over 100,000 patients from the Rohingya and local Bangladeshi communities.

IOM supports 19 health facilities, nine of which provide services to both communities. At the community clinics located very close to the refugee settlements, including Kutupalong and Leda, approximately 30 per cent of patients seen are from the local Bangladeshi community. 

Under IOM’s outreach preventive programme, health promoters visit families in Ukhiya and Teknaf, sub-districts of Cox’s Bazar where the refugee settlements have developed, to register pregnant women and children, encourage and ensure antenatal and postnatal care visits, provide first aid care and refer complicated cases to IOM-supported centres for further treatment.

For more information, please contact

Fiona MacGregor at IOM Cox’s Bazar, Tel: +8801733335221, Email: fmacgregor@iom.int  

Shirin Ahkter at IOM Dhaka, Tel: +880 2 55044811-13, Email: sakhter@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:25Image: Region-Country: BangladeshThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMigration HealthRefugee and Asylum IssuesDefault: Multimedia: 

Men wait to be seen by the doctor at the IOM-supported Kutupalong Community Healthcare Clinic, which services both Rohingya refugees and the local Bangladesh community. Photot: Olivia Headon / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

UN Migration Agency’s Data Analysis Centre Publishes New Series of Data Bulletins

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:47

Berlin – A new series launched by the Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) of IOM, the UN Migration Agency, aims to summarize the existing evidence on migration in an accurate and accessible fashion, to support discussions and any follow-up activities of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.

The Data Bulletins are part of a project Support to IOM for the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, funded by the European Union, to outline the strengths and limitations of relevant migration data, and highlight innovative data practices which are pertinent to a global compact for migration. 

Data Bulletins reflect the collaborative nature of a global compact for migration process by including relevant contributions from different parts of IOM, as well as other agencies and migration experts. The first three issues are being published for distribution during the preparatory stocktaking meeting in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, currently taking place through to 6 December 2017. 

The first issue, Global Migration Trends, provides a brief overview of key global migration trends, based on available statistics and estimates from a variety of sources, to support informed decision-making throughout a global compact for migration process. The document summarizes key facts and figures on a range of migration-related topics, covering the period January 2015–December 2016, and cites more recent figures when available.

Although this Data Bulletin is by no means exhaustive, it presents a broad picture of the state of migration around the world. A more detailed report on global migration trends will be published by IOM’s GMDAC in December 2017.

More Than Numbers: The Value of Migration Data is the second issue in the series. Produced by IOM’s GMDAC with analytic support from McKinsey & Company, this Data Bulletin makes the case that there is significant value in migration which can be better leveraged by identifying and making targeted investments in data. It outlines a framework to prioritize data needs and investments, and points to potential next steps at the global, regional and national levels.

A full report will be released in January 2018, detailing a vision for how data can enable value capture in migration.

The third issue of the Data Bulletin, Measuring Migration Governance, describes strategies for understanding and enhancing national migration policies and governance structures. By providing a clear overview of selected indices of migration policies, this issue of the Data Bulletin series aims to give policymakers the information and tools to assess and improve on migration governance, which has become increasingly important in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Migration Governance Indicators (MGI), developed by IOM and the Economist Intelligence Unit in 2015–2016, are examples of these tools. They are applied in full consultation with national authorities to measure good migration governance through a comprehensive framework covering six main policy domains.

The MGIs help countries assess the extent to which their migration policy is comprehensive, thereby identifying best practices and areas in need of further development. The MGIs can also help countries develop baseline assessments and conduct future reviews of their work to assess progress in the context of the SDGs and the Global Compact for Migration.

The six policy domains are based on IOM’s Migration Governance Framework (MiGOF).

For more information on the MGI and MiGOF please see https://gmdac.iom.int/migration-governance-indicators and http://www.iom.int/multilateral-processes.  

The Data Bulletin: Informing a Global Compact for Migration will continue to focus on providing policymakers with the information and analysis required for evidence-based decision making. Future issues will be published and distributed, notably at key events related to a global compact for migration process throughout 2018.

For more information please contact:

IOM's Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC), Tel.: +49 30 278 778 11, Email: www.gmdac.iom.int

Denis Kierans, IOM GMDAC, dkierans@iom.int

Marzia Rango, IOM GMDAC, mrango@iom.int

Abdel Rahmane Diop, IOM Global Compact for Migration Team, ardiop@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:24Image: Region-Country: GermanyThemes: Global CompactGlobal Compact on MigrationMigration ResearchDefault: Multimedia: 

The first issue, “Global Migration Trends,” provides an overview of key global migration trends, based on available statistics and estimates from a variety of sources. Photo: Amanda Nero / UN Migration Agency (IOM)

IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre aims to summarize the existing evidence on migration in an accurate and accessible fashion. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

UN Migration Agency’s Data Analysis Centre Publishes New Series of Data Bulletins

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:47

Berlin – A new series launched by the Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) of IOM, the UN Migration Agency, aims to summarize the existing evidence on migration in an accurate and accessible fashion, to support discussions and any follow-up activities of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.

The Data Bulletins are part of a project Support to IOM for the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration, funded by the European Union, to outline the strengths and limitations of relevant migration data, and highlight innovative data practices which are pertinent to a global compact for migration. 

Data Bulletins reflect the collaborative nature of a global compact for migration process by including relevant contributions from different parts of IOM, as well as other agencies and migration experts. The first three issues are being published for distribution during the preparatory stocktaking meeting in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, currently taking place through to 6 December 2017. 

The first issue, Global Migration Trends, provides a brief overview of key global migration trends, based on available statistics and estimates from a variety of sources, to support informed decision-making throughout a global compact for migration process. The document summarizes key facts and figures on a range of migration-related topics, covering the period January 2015–December 2016, and cites more recent figures when available.

Although this Data Bulletin is by no means exhaustive, it presents a broad picture of the state of migration around the world. A more detailed report on global migration trends will be published by IOM’s GMDAC in December 2017.

More Than Numbers: The Value of Migration Data is the second issue in the series. Produced by IOM’s GMDAC with analytic support from McKinsey & Company, this Data Bulletin makes the case that there is significant value in migration which can be better leveraged by identifying and making targeted investments in data. It outlines a framework to prioritize data needs and investments, and points to potential next steps at the global, regional and national levels.

A full report will be released in January 2018, detailing a vision for how data can enable value capture in migration.

The third issue of the Data Bulletin, Measuring Migration Governance, describes strategies for understanding and enhancing national migration policies and governance structures. By providing a clear overview of selected indices of migration policies, this issue of the Data Bulletin series aims to give policymakers the information and tools to assess and improve on migration governance, which has become increasingly important in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Migration Governance Indicators (MGI), developed by IOM and the Economist Intelligence Unit in 2015–2016, are examples of these tools. They are applied in full consultation with national authorities to measure good migration governance through a comprehensive framework covering six main policy domains.

The MGIs help countries assess the extent to which their migration policy is comprehensive, thereby identifying best practices and areas in need of further development. The MGIs can also help countries develop baseline assessments and conduct future reviews of their work to assess progress in the context of the SDGs and the Global Compact for Migration.

The six policy domains are based on IOM’s Migration Governance Framework (MiGOF).

For more information on the MGI and MiGOF please see https://gmdac.iom.int/migration-governance-indicators and http://www.iom.int/multilateral-processes.  

The Data Bulletin: Informing a Global Compact for Migration will continue to focus on providing policymakers with the information and analysis required for evidence-based decision making. Future issues will be published and distributed, notably at key events related to a global compact for migration process throughout 2018.

For more information please contact:

IOM's Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC), Tel.: +49 30 278 778 11, Email: www.gmdac.iom.int

Denis Kierans, IOM GMDAC, dkierans@iom.int

Marzia Rango, IOM GMDAC, mrango@iom.int

Abdel Rahmane Diop, IOM Global Compact for Migration Team, ardiop@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:24Image: Region-Country: GermanyThemes: Global CompactGlobal Compact on MigrationMigration ResearchDefault: Multimedia: 

The first issue, “Global Migration Trends,” provides an overview of key global migration trends, based on available statistics and estimates from a variety of sources. Photo: Amanda Nero / UN Migration Agency (IOM)

IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre aims to summarize the existing evidence on migration in an accurate and accessible fashion. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mobile Medical Units Reach Over 1,200 Migrants, Refugees in Greece in 2 Months

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:43

Athens – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, and partner Médecins du Monde (MdM) announced today (5 December) that together they have rapidly provided primary health care services to over 1,200 migrants and refugees on the Greek mainland. The services were provided via mobile medical units during a two-month period between September and October 2017. 

The medical teams also conducted over 3,400 primary health care consultations – an average of almost 80 daily – since the EU-funded project began in September. Consultations cover examinations, prescriptions of medicines and referrals to other facilities for secondary care in three open-accommodation facilities in Greece. 

Gianluca Rocco, IOM Greece Chief of Mission, explained that thousands of migrants and refugees currently living in Greece face health issues that require immediate care. However, they often face difficulties in accessing the National Health System outside the accommodation facilities where they reside.

"The medical assistance is very much needed,” Rocco said. “Improving the health of migrants and refugees is a fundamental step in helping them begin to rebuild their lives.”

“We are collaborating closely with MdM in Greece and supporting the Greek Government and authorities to alleviate suffering, protect human dignity and safeguard the human right to health,” he added.

IOM and MdM also are working closely to ensure a smooth transition and handover of health services to the Greek Government from 2018, and they welcome the integration of migrants and refugees into the national healthcare system.

“We are very satisfied with our cooperation with the International Organization for Migration and the European Commission,” said Christos Dimopoulos, Protection and Integration Projects Manager of Médecins du Monde in Greece.

“Through this project, we have been able to provide needed health care services to vulnerable migrants and refugees while also moving towards handing over their health coverage to the National Health System,” Dimopoulos explained.

The mobile medical units are comprised of general practitioners, pediatricians, dentists, nurses, interpreters and drivers who provide primary healthcare services five days per week in morning and afternoon shifts. They work in open centres in Thermopylae, Serres and Oinofyta.

The units conduct health consultations and provide primary health care services for minor medical issues such as viral infections, colds and injuries. They also prescribe medicine and monitor people with chronic illnesses such as heart diseases, diabetes, respiratory problems and gynecological health problems.

For people in need of secondary health care, MdM medical units facilitate referrals to hospitals by organizing appointments, and by providing transportation and escorts where possible. 

"Health care is essential for refugees and asylum seekers in Greece, as it is for every person,” said Evangelos Petratos, the European Commission's Humanitarian Expert in Greece. “For this reason, the European Commission supports its humanitarian partners in the country in their efforts to provide them with primary health assistance.”

“We are glad to see the achievements so far and the good cooperation between our partners and the Greek health authorities,” he continued. 

The joint IOM - MdM project is funded by the European Commission. 

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

Nikolaos Kallakos at MdM Greece, Email: info@mdmgreece.gr, Tel: +30 210 32 36 224;

Carlos Martin Ruiz de Gordejuela at the European Commission, Email: carlos.martin@ec.europa.eu, Tel. +32 22 96 53 22, Mobile: +32 46 07 91 716

Daniel Puglisi, Email: daniel.puglisi@ec.europa.eu, Tel. +32 22 96 91 40, Mobile: +32 46 07 67 374

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:23Image: Region-Country: GreeceThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMigration HealthDefault: Multimedia: 

Migrant child receives a vaccination before school enrollment. Photo: Médecins du Monde 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

Mobile Medical Units Reach Over 1,200 Migrants, Refugees in Greece in 2 Months

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:43

Athens – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, and partner Médecins du Monde (MdM) announced today (5 December) that together they have rapidly provided primary health care services to over 1,200 migrants and refugees on the Greek mainland. The services were provided via mobile medical units during a two-month period between September and October 2017. 

The medical teams also conducted over 3,400 primary health care consultations – an average of almost 80 daily – since the EU-funded project began in September. Consultations cover examinations, prescriptions of medicines and referrals to other facilities for secondary care in three open-accommodation facilities in Greece. 

Gianluca Rocco, IOM Greece Chief of Mission, explained that thousands of migrants and refugees currently living in Greece face health issues that require immediate care. However, they often face difficulties in accessing the National Health System outside the accommodation facilities where they reside.

"The medical assistance is very much needed,” Rocco said. “Improving the health of migrants and refugees is a fundamental step in helping them begin to rebuild their lives.”

“We are collaborating closely with MdM in Greece and supporting the Greek Government and authorities to alleviate suffering, protect human dignity and safeguard the human right to health,” he added.

IOM and MdM also are working closely to ensure a smooth transition and handover of health services to the Greek Government from 2018, and they welcome the integration of migrants and refugees into the national healthcare system.

“We are very satisfied with our cooperation with the International Organization for Migration and the European Commission,” said Christos Dimopoulos, Protection and Integration Projects Manager of Médecins du Monde in Greece.

“Through this project, we have been able to provide needed health care services to vulnerable migrants and refugees while also moving towards handing over their health coverage to the National Health System,” Dimopoulos explained.

The mobile medical units are comprised of general practitioners, pediatricians, dentists, nurses, interpreters and drivers who provide primary healthcare services five days per week in morning and afternoon shifts. They work in open centres in Thermopylae, Serres and Oinofyta.

The units conduct health consultations and provide primary health care services for minor medical issues such as viral infections, colds and injuries. They also prescribe medicine and monitor people with chronic illnesses such as heart diseases, diabetes, respiratory problems and gynecological health problems.

For people in need of secondary health care, MdM medical units facilitate referrals to hospitals by organizing appointments, and by providing transportation and escorts where possible. 

"Health care is essential for refugees and asylum seekers in Greece, as it is for every person,” said Evangelos Petratos, the European Commission's Humanitarian Expert in Greece. “For this reason, the European Commission supports its humanitarian partners in the country in their efforts to provide them with primary health assistance.”

“We are glad to see the achievements so far and the good cooperation between our partners and the Greek health authorities,” he continued. 

The joint IOM - MdM project is funded by the European Commission. 

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

Nikolaos Kallakos at MdM Greece, Email: info@mdmgreece.gr, Tel: +30 210 32 36 224;

Carlos Martin Ruiz de Gordejuela at the European Commission, Email: carlos.martin@ec.europa.eu, Tel. +32 22 96 53 22, Mobile: +32 46 07 91 716

Daniel Puglisi, Email: daniel.puglisi@ec.europa.eu, Tel. +32 22 96 91 40, Mobile: +32 46 07 67 374

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:23Image: Region-Country: GreeceThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMigration HealthDefault: Multimedia: 

Migrant child receives a vaccination before school enrollment. Photo: Médecins du Monde 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM UK Promoting Integration, Inclusion through Migration Film Festivals

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:39

London – IOM UK is supporting the exclusive early screening of Ai Wei Wei’s new film, Human Flow, tonight (05/12) at the prestigious Somerset House in central London. Human Flow is a heart-breaking exploration of the global refugee situation, and despite there being numerous documentaries covering the current refugee situation, none come this close to portraying the scale and severity of it.

The event will round off this year’s London Migration Film Festival (LMFF), which IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is supporting with communications and logistical assistance. IOM UK recognizes the important role that film festivals and other social activities have in facilitating the integration process for migrants.

As part of IOM UK’s community cohesion and integration strategy strand, the LMFF was selected as the forum to mark this year’s International Migrant’s Day (18/12), and as a local partner to IOM’s own Global Migration Film Festival running from 5-18 December and the global youth migration film competition and festival, Plural+. As the local partner, IOM UK and the LMFF organized a second event at the famous Ritzy cinema in Brixton, London.

The sell-out event featured the GMFF entry, Misafir ‘A Guest’, and the winner of the Plural+ Be a Champion for Social Inclusion. The screenings were followed by a short address by the winner Gabriel Brown, and an interactive panel discussion with IOM UK, Doctors Without Borders and the London based children’s charity Coram. 

The LMFF kicked off at the Migration Museum on Thursday 30 November with around 500 people in attendance and featured a mix of live performances and short films.

“We all want to get on well with our neighbours. And we get on better with our neighbours when we have shared interests and passions. Integration of migrants and refugees in British society is vital if we are to live in harmony with each other, said Dipti Pardeshi, IOM UK Chief of Mission. “That is why IOM UK is supporting the London Migration Film Festival in aid of International Migrants Day 2017, with a special performance from our partner Together Productions, working with the New Mixed Up Chorus and Sing for Freedom choirs.”

She added, “Coming together to sing, to dance, to play – are all wonderful examples of how we can bring people together from all cultures, faiths, backgrounds and migration experiences to note that we can get along with our neighbours, by focusing on what we have in common, instead of what we don’t.”

IOM UK recognizes the importance of integrating migrants through shared interests such as movies, art, sports and music. The increasing recognition and coverage the LMFF is receiving is a testament of how connecting with others through shared interests is both powerful and engaging.

Just last month (October 2017), IOM UK and the English Football Association arranged for 44 Syrian refugees and their family members to travel to Wembley for the England vs Germany football match. One of the girls attending the game couldn’t hold back her excitement, “I felt like I am a part of this country, I took photos during the match and sent them to my friends in Syria!”

For more information, please contact: Chris Gaul at IOM UK, Tel: + 44 20 7811 6053, Email: cgaul@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:22Image: Region-Country: United KingdomDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM UK Promoting Integration, Inclusion through Migration Film Festivals

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:39

London – IOM UK is supporting the exclusive early screening of Ai Wei Wei’s new film, Human Flow, tonight (05/12) at the prestigious Somerset House in central London. Human Flow is a heart-breaking exploration of the global refugee situation, and despite there being numerous documentaries covering the current refugee situation, none come this close to portraying the scale and severity of it.

The event will round up the London Migration Film Festival (LMFF), which IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is supporting with communications and logistical assistance.

As part of IOM UK’s community cohesion and integration strategy strand, the LMFF was selected as the forum to mark this year’s International Migrant’s Day (18/12), and as a local partner to IOM’s own Global Migration Film Festival running from 5-18 December and the global youth migration film competition and festival, Plural+. As the local partner, IOM UK and the LMFF organized a second event at the famous Ritzy cinema in Brixton, London.

The sell-out event featured the GMFF entry, Misafir ‘A Guest’, and the winner of the Plural+ Be a Champion for Social Inclusion. The screenings were followed by a short address by the winner Gabriel Brown, and an interactive panel discussion with IOM UK, Doctors Without Borders and the London based children’s charity Coram. 

The LMFF kicked off at the Migration Museum on Thursday 30 November with around 500 people in attendance and featured a mix of live performances and short films.

“We all want to get on well with our neighbours. And we get on better with our neighbours when we have shared interests and passions. Integration of migrants and refugees in British society is vital if we are to live in harmony with each other, said Dipti Pardeshi, IOM UK Chief of Mission. “That is why IOM UK is supporting the London Migration Film Festival in aid of International Migrants Day 2017, with a special performance from our partner Together Productions, working with the New Mixed Up Chorus and Sing for Freedom choirs.”

She added, “Coming together to sing, to dance, to play – are all wonderful examples of how we can bring people together from all cultures, faiths, backgrounds and migration experiences to note that we can get along with our neighbours, by focusing on what we have in common, instead of what we don’t.”

IOM UK recognizes the importance of integrating migrants through shared interests such as movies, art, sports and music. The increasing recognition and coverage the LMFF is receiving is a testament of how connecting with others through shared interests is both powerful and engaging.

Just last month (October 2017), IOM UK and the English Football Association arranged for 44 Syrian refugees and their family members to travel to Wembley for the England vs Germany football match. One of the girls attending the game couldn’t hold back her excitement, “I felt like I am a part of this country, I took photos during the match and sent them to my friends in Syria!”

For more information, please contact: Chris Gaul at IOM UK, Tel: + 44 20 7811 6053, Email: cgaul@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:22Image: Region-Country: United KingdomDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM, Canada Donate Document Fraud Detection Equipment to Ghana Immigration Service

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:37

Accra – IOM Ghana has donated document fraud detection equipment to the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) with funding provided by the Government of Canada. The equipment included passport reference manuals, compact magnifiers and document verification devices.

The 50 compact magnifiers will allow frontline GIS officers, in direct contact with travellers at entry/exit points to increase their document examination capacity on the ground while the document authentication and verification devices will ensure greater scrutiny in case of referrals for secondary level examination.

In addition, the donation included 45 copies of IOM’s Passport Examination Procedures Manual (PEPM) which is one of the world’s leading reference tools of its kind. It is designed for use by frontline immigration and border management officials and provides a standardized approach to the inspection and identification of fraudulent travel documents.

IOM Ghana Chief of Mission, Sylvia Lopez-Ekra said, “The project has made great strides with multi-country trainings on counter smuggling for land and maritime officials but also Training of Trainers (ToT) workshops successfully rolled out and duplicated in the three countries."

She added, "This has created a sizable pool of trainers on counter-smuggling in Ghana. The new equipment will help these officers operationalise the training they have received and facilitate the detection of fraudulent travel documents at the borders”. 

The project also aims to establish strong sub-regional coordination mechanisms while awareness and knowledge of migrant smuggling in raised.

The donation was made as part of the IOM counter-smuggling project, Addressing Counter-Smuggling and Protection Gaps in Ghana, Benin and Togo: Strengthening National and Regional Mechanisms, which is being implemented with support from the Canadian Anti-Crime Capacity Building Programme (ACCBP). The project which started in July 2016 and will run until December 2017 is intended to reduce participating countries’ (Ghana, Togo and Benin) vulnerability to migrant smuggling by enhancing their national capacity to counter this transnational threat.

Addressing Counter-Smuggling and Protection Gaps in Ghana, Benin and Togo: Strengthening National and Regional Mechanisms is a partnership between IOM Ghana, GIS, Ghana Revenue Authority – Customs Division, Ghana Police Service, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Attorney-General’s Department, Ghana Maritime Authority, Ghana Navy and Bureau of National Investigations.

For more information, please contact: Daniel Tagoe at IOM Ghana, Tel: 0302 742 930 Ext 2408 or +233 244 774 211, Email: dtagoe@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:21Image: Region-Country: GhanaThemes: Capacity BuildingIntegrated Border ManagementDefault: Multimedia: 

From left; IOM Ghana Chief of Mission, Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, High Commissioner of Canada to Ghana and Sierra Leone and Canadian Ambassador to Togo, H.E. Heather Cameron, Ghana Immigration Service Comptroller-General, Mr. Kwame Asuah Takyi. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 

From left; IOM Ghana Chief of Mission, Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, High Commissioner of Canada to Ghana and Sierra Leone and Canadian Ambassador to Togo, H.E. Heather Cameron, Ghana Immigration Service Comptroller-General, Mr. Kwame Asuah Takyi. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 

Stakeholders and beneficiaries of the document fraud detection equipment donation. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

IOM, Canada Donate Document Fraud Detection Equipment to Ghana Immigration Service

Tue, 12/05/2017 - 08:37

Accra – IOM Ghana has donated document fraud detection equipment to the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) with funding provided by the Government of Canada. The equipment included passport reference manuals, compact magnifiers and document verification devices.

The 50 compact magnifiers will allow frontline GIS officers, in direct contact with travellers at entry/exit points to increase their document examination capacity on the ground while the document authentication and verification devices will ensure greater scrutiny in case of referrals for secondary level examination.

In addition, the donation included 45 copies of IOM’s Passport Examination Procedures Manual (PEPM) which is one of the world’s leading reference tools of its kind. It is designed for use by frontline immigration and border management officials and provides a standardized approach to the inspection and identification of fraudulent travel documents.

IOM Ghana Chief of Mission, Sylvia Lopez-Ekra said, “The project has made great strides with multi-country trainings on counter smuggling for land and maritime officials but also Training of Trainers (ToT) workshops successfully rolled out and duplicated in the three countries."

She added, "This has created a sizable pool of trainers on counter-smuggling in Ghana. The new equipment will help these officers operationalise the training they have received and facilitate the detection of fraudulent travel documents at the borders”. 

The project also aims to establish strong sub-regional coordination mechanisms while awareness and knowledge of migrant smuggling in raised.

The donation was made as part of the IOM counter-smuggling project, Addressing Counter-Smuggling and Protection Gaps in Ghana, Benin and Togo: Strengthening National and Regional Mechanisms, which is being implemented with support from the Canadian Anti-Crime Capacity Building Programme (ACCBP). The project which started in July 2016 and will run until December 2017 is intended to reduce participating countries’ (Ghana, Togo and Benin) vulnerability to migrant smuggling by enhancing their national capacity to counter this transnational threat.

Addressing Counter-Smuggling and Protection Gaps in Ghana, Benin and Togo: Strengthening National and Regional Mechanisms is a partnership between IOM Ghana, GIS, Ghana Revenue Authority – Customs Division, Ghana Police Service, Ministry of the Interior, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, Attorney-General’s Department, Ghana Maritime Authority, Ghana Navy and Bureau of National Investigations.

For more information, please contact: Daniel Tagoe at IOM Ghana, Tel: 0302 742 930 Ext 2408 or +233 244 774 211, Email: dtagoe@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, December 5, 2017 - 15:21Image: Region-Country: GhanaThemes: Capacity BuildingIntegrated Border ManagementDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM Ghana and partners inaugurated a new Public Health Emergency Response Plan for the Kotoka International Airport last week. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

UN Migration Agency Moves to Relieve Plight of Migrants Trapped in Libya, Backing AU-EU Plan

Fri, 12/01/2017 - 10:02

Major airlift underway as IOM starts flying 15,000 more migrants from Libya before year end

Geneva – IOM Director General William Lacy Swing has committed IOM to fully support this week’s initiative of the African Union with the European Union and Libya’s Government of National Unity, with UN backing to alleviate the plight of thousands of migrants trapped in Libya.

In the wake of shocking reports about rampant migrant abuse and squalid and overcrowded conditions across multiple detention centers in Libya, talks in the Côte d'Ivoire capital Abidjan at the AU-EU Summit this week, are leading to a major stepping up of measures to tackle smuggling and mistreatment of migrants on the central Mediterranean migration route, which claimed 2,803 migrant lives to drowning this year alone.

IOM is now rapidly scaling up its voluntary humanitarian return programme, which has brought more than 14,007 migrants back to their home countries so far in 2017. A large-scale airlift is already underway in which IOM expects to take a further 15,000 migrants home from detention in Libya by end of the year. The establishment of a planned joint task force with all concerned parties is aimed at ensuring that the migration crisis in Libya is dealt with in a coordinated way.

"Scaling up our return programme may not serve to fully address the plight of migrants in Libya, but it is our duty to take migrants out of detention centers as a matter of absolute priority," IOM DG Swing said Thursday to IOM Member States gathered in Geneva to take part in the IOM Council.

DG Swing added that IOM intends to work with all UN partners and ensure proper coordination and prompt referral of any persons for whom return may not be suitable. These initiatives come following Director General Swing’s discussions with African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat, as well as with EU High Representative for Foreign Policy Federica Mogherini and UN Secretary General.

Libya in recent weeks has witnessed a drastic increase in the numbers of migrants held in detention centers – from a usual range of 5,000 to 6,000  to over 15,000, as migrants have been transferred from unofficial detention centers in Sabratha. To date IOM has registered more than 400,000 migrants in Libya, and IOM estimates the number of migrants to be more than 700,000 to 1 million. The scaling up of the assistance will also include migrants wishing to go back home but are not in detention centers.

Large numbers of migrants are held in overcrowded detention centers, in conditions that fall far short of basic and humane standards. A large number of those migrants have expressed a wish to return to their countries of origin and IOM is now scaling up its air operations out of Libya to assist those men, women and children who may wish to return home. IOM’s initial effort will focus on 15,000 migrants, which it aims to help return and reintegrate in countries of origin before the end of the year.

“This is a choice people make voluntarily, hoping for a new start at home,” said Othman Belbeisi, IOM’s Chief of Mission in Libya. “We are conscious that return alone is not sufficient to address the situation of migrants in Libya, and therefore we are also committed to expanding our advocacy and capacity building efforts in order to introduce new approaches to migration management in Libya, in close cooperation with the Government of Libya and partners in the UN."

For reintegration to be sustainable, IOM is also scaling up its support for migrants who returned voluntarily to countries of origin and will be working on addressing the root causes of migration, as well as increasing our programming to counter smuggling and human trafficking in the migration routes. IOM is appealing for further support to enhance such an approach.

For the past year, the return of migrants has been funded by the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa (EUTF), the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, The UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund and the United States. The scaling up of humanitarian returns following the AU-EU summit is funded by the EUTF, UK, Italy, Germany and the African Union.

So far this year IOM has assisted some 14,007 migrants going home from Libya, a significant increase compared to the 2,775 voluntary returns carried out in 2016. The majority of migrants asking to join this programme are Sub-Saharan Africans, including migrants originating from Nigeria (4,316), Guinea (1,588), the Gambia (1,351), Mali (1,305) and Senegal (973).

For more information, please contact:

IOM HQ:

Leonard Doyle, Tel: +41 79 2857123, Email: ldoyle@iom.int

IOM Libya:

Othman Belbeisi, Tel: +216 29 600 389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int

Christine Petré, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int

IOM Italy:

Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int

IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa

Richard Danziger, Regional Director, Tel: + 221 77 637 23 22, Email: rdanziger@iom.int

Florence Kim, Regional media and communications officer, West and Central Africa, Tel: +221 78 620 62 13, Email: fkim@iom.int 

 

Language English Posted: Friday, December 1, 2017 - 16:34Image: Region-Country: LibyaThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: Multimedia: 

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

UN Migration Agency Moves to Relieve Plight of Migrants Trapped in Libya, Backing AU-EU Plan

Fri, 12/01/2017 - 10:02

Major airlift underway as IOM starts flying 15,000 more migrants from Libya before year end

Geneva – IOM Director General William Lacy Swing has committed IOM to fully support this week’s initiative of the African Union with the European Union and Libya’s Government of National Unity, with UN backing to alleviate the plight of thousands of migrants trapped in Libya.

In the wake of shocking reports about rampant migrant abuse and squalid and overcrowded conditions across multiple detention centers in Libya, talks in the Côte d'Ivoire capital Abidjan at the AU-EU Summit this week, are leading to a major stepping up of measures to tackle smuggling and mistreatment of migrants on the central Mediterranean migration route, which claimed 2,803 migrant lives to drowning this year alone.

IOM is now rapidly scaling up its voluntary humanitarian return program, which has brought more than 14,007 migrants back their home countries so far in 2017. A large-scale airlift is already underway in which IOM expects to take a further 15,000 migrants home from detention in Libya by end of the year. The establishment of a planned joint task force with all concerned parties is aimed at ensuring that the migration crisis in Libya is dealt with in a coordinated way.

"Scaling up our return programme may not serve to fully address the plight of migrants in Libya, but it is our duty to take migrants out of detention centers as a matter of absolute priority," IOM DG Swing said Thursday to IOM Member States gathered in Geneva to take part in the IOM Council.

DG Swing added that IOM intends to work with all UN partners and ensure proper coordination and prompt referral of any persons for whom return may not be suitable. These initiatives come following Director General Swing’s discussions with African Union Commission Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat, as well as with EU High Representative for Foreign Policy Federica Mogherini and UN Secretary General.

Libya in recent weeks has witnessed a drastic increase in the numbers of migrants held in detention centers – from a usual range of 5,000 to 6,000  to over 15,000, as migrants have been transferred from unofficial detention centers in Sabratha. To date IOM has registered more than 400,000 migrants in Libya, and IOM estimates the number of migrants to be more than 700,000 to 1 million. The scaling up of the assistance will also include migrants wishing to go back home but are not in detention centers.

Large numbers of migrants are held in overcrowded detention centers, in conditions that fall far short of basic and humane standards. A large number of those migrants have expressed a wish to return to their countries of origin and IOM is now scaling up its air operations out of Libya to assist those men, women and children who may wish to return home. IOM’s initial effort will focus on 15,000 migrants, which it aims to help return and reintegrate in countries of origin before the end of the year.

“This is a choice people make voluntarily, hoping for a new start at home,” said Othman Belbeisi, IOM’s Chief of Mission in Libya. “We are conscious that return alone is not sufficient to address the situation of migrants in Libya, and therefore we are also committed to expanding our advocacy and capacity building efforts in order to introduce new approaches to migration management in Libya, in close cooperation with the Government of Libya and partners in the UN."

For the returns to be sustainable, IOM is also scaling up its reintegration support for the migrants in countries of origin and will be working on addressing the root causes of migration, as well as increasing our programming to counter smuggling and human trafficking in the migration routes. IOM is appealing for further support to enhance such an approach.

For the past year the return of migrants has been funded by the European Union Emergency Trust Fund for Africa (EUTF), the United Kingdom, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway , The UN’s Central Emergency Response Fund and the United States. The scaling up of humanitarian returns following the AU-EU summit is be funded by the EUTF, UK, Italy, Germany and the African Union.

So far this year IOM has assisted some 14,007 migrants going home from Libya, a significant increase compared to the 2,775 voluntary returns carried out in 2016. The majority of migrants asking to join this programme are Sub-Saharan Africans, including migrants originating from Nigeria (4,316), Guinea (1,588), the Gambia (1,351), Mali (1,305) and Senegal (973).

For more information, please contact at:

IOM HQ:

Leonard Doyle, Tel: +41 79 2857123, Email: ldoyle@iom.int

IOM Libya:

Othman Belbeisi, Tel: +216 29 600 389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int

Christine Petré, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int

IOM Italy:

Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int

IOM Regional Office for West and Central Africa

Richard Danziger, Regional Director, Tel: + 221 77 637 23 22, Email: rdanziger@iom.int

Florence Kim, Regional media and communications officer, West and Central Africa, Tel: +221 78 620 62 13, Email: fkim@iom.int 

 

Language English Posted: Friday, December 1, 2017 - 16:34Image: Region-Country: LibyaThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: Multimedia: 

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

On Tuesday 29 November a flight chartered by IOM Libya carrying 155 Guinean migrants, including 10 unaccompanied minors landed in Conakry. This is the fourth flight since early November. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categories: PBN

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