Languages

  • English
  • Deutsch
Subscribe to PBN News Germany feed
Updated: 1 hour 25 min ago

IOM Libya DTM Report: 294,436 Internally Displaced, 196,852 Return Home

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:46
Language English

Libya - IOM Libya’s latest Displacement Tracking Matrix Mobility Tracking report shows that there are 294,436 IDP individuals residing in 89 baladiyas (municipalities) across the country and 196,852 individuals who have returned to their homes across 30 baladiyas.

Data collection for IOM Libya’s eighth Mobility Tracking report, was carried out from mid-January to mid-February across all baladiyas and muhallas (neighbourhoods) in the country.  The report is the first to reflect DTM’s updated Mobility Tracking data collection methodology for 2017.

To provide more context to internally displaced persons (IDP) and returnee needs and vulnerabilities, new baseline indicators have been added on health, education, livelihoods, nutrition, public services, security, and community relations between residents, IDPs and returnees. These aim to provide humanitarian partners with tools to flag and identify areas within the country that may require targeting of specific types of assistance or prioritize aid based on a more comprehensive vulnerability analysis.

The largest number of IDPs identified continues to be in Benghazi with 38,400 IDPs reported during this round. Other baladiyas hosting large numbers of IDPs are Abusliem, Bani Waleed, Ejdabia and Misrata.

IDP relations with residents in baladiyas were reported to be good or excellent, and in 17 per cent of baladiyas the presence of IDPs was reported to have a positive impact on the local labour market in terms of generating greater economic activity. IDPs’ main reported sources of income were public employment, small business or trading, or aid from NGOs or the government. Eighty-six per cent of identified IDPs resided in private accommodation, 87 per cent of whom were in self-paid rented accommodation.

Sixty-seven per cent of returnees identified during this round were in the baladiya of Benghazi. Ubari, Abu Qurayn and Kikkla also had large numbers of returnees over the course of 2016. Around 92 per cent of returnees had gone back to their homes upon returning to their baladiya of origin during 2016, while nearly 4 per cent returning to new homes and 4 per cent were hosted by relatives at the time of reporting.

Generally, returnees were reported to have good relations with the community in their baladiya of return, with poor relations and a negative impact on the labour market being reported in only 4 per cent of baladiyas. Returnees appeared to have a negative impact on public services in 18 per cent of baladiyas to which they returned. The main source of income for returnees was reported to be public employment, followed by farming and aid.

The report presents key facts and figures from the data gathered; however, the full dataset is available on the DTM website to facilitate more in-depth analysis of displacement data and trends.

“DTM Reports provide Libya with common and evidence-driven narratives, ensuring that there is no information gap on any part of Libya,” said IOM Libya’s DTM programme coordinator, Dan Salmon.

DTM’s Mobility Tracking module provides regular updates to Libya’s baseline on IDPs, returnees and migrants in the country. DTM also publishes data on migrant flows in Libya through its Flow Monitoring statistical and survey analysis reports and provides bi-weekly updates on displacement-related incidents through its Displacement Event Tracker.

All reports, methodologies and datasets are available at www.globaldtm.info/libya

For further information, please contact IOM Libya: Othman Belbeisi, Tel: +216 29 600389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int  or Daniel Salmon, Tel: +216 29 235097, Email: dsalmon@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:07Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastLibyaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Iraq Publishes First Nationwide Assessment on Displacement and Returns

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:45
Language English

Iraq - As the Mosul operation continues and aid agencies expect thousands more people to flee clashes in Iraq’s Ninewa governorate, a recent study conducted by IOM Iraq Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) takes a comprehensive look at displacement and return across the country.

The Integrated Location Assessment (ILA) is IOM Iraq’s first nationwide attempt to simultaneously analyse both displacement and return movements of conflict-affected people. Focusing on both populations enables identification of overarching trends of population movements; evaluation of the pressure that forced displacement places on some governorates; and an outline of social and living conditions, basic needs, intentions and vulnerabilities shared by internally displaced persons (IDPs) and returnees.

The assessment covered 3,700 locations across Iraq, where approximately 2.9 million IDPs and more than 720,000 returnees are based. Interviews were carried out with a variety of key informants in each location, including representatives of the host community, displaced population and returnee population. The study was conducted from 1 July to mid-October 2016, thus providing critical sectorial information for more than 3.5 million individuals who have been affected since the beginning of this crisis in 2014.

The report is structured in two parts:  Part I offers a thematic overview at country level around five main topics: population and movements; infrastructure conditions; social conditions (including vulnerabilities and protection issues); living conditions; and intentions.

Part II provides profiles of the 18 Iraqi governorates; key themes are reviewed at the governorate and district level. Focus is placed on governorates hosting both IDP and returnee populations, profiling the context and social dynamics of these groups.

Among the main findings, this study identifies access to income to be the primary concern for both populations reported in 65-per-cent of locations hosting IDPs and in 75 per cent of locations hosting returnees. Difficulties in accessing means to earn income are reflected in the high percentage of families stating that they are unable to access food, Non-Food Items (NFI) and health services. Prices are reportedly too expensive for most IDPs and returnees.

Furthermore, shelter remains one of the most pressing issues for both IDPs and returnees, although categorization of the problem differs. In half of the locations shelter is too expensive for IDPs, and in one third of locations returnees live in houses in poor conditions.

The report stresses that the long-term intention of IDPs is to return home; however, over 50 per cent would rather stay in their current location for the moment. Specifically, the top three obstacles to IDP return are: unsafe situation in the location of origin, lack of shelter (house occupied or badly damaged) and absence of services in the location of origin. At the same time, the top three reasons for return are: safety of the location of return, possibility to work/recreate economic activity and general living conditions of the location. 

Within the protection concerns identified, the most urgent and frequently reported by IDPs are government evictions and challenges regarding lost legal entitlements and documents.

Returnees are concerned about the risk of arbitrary arrest. Also, domestic violence is being reported both as a priority protection concern and as a child protection concern by high portions of IDP families, indicating stressed family dynamics for those in displacement.

The ILA Part I: Thematic Overview, as the ILA Part II: Governorate Profiles can be downloaded on the DTM ILA portal page. The ILA Round II is currently being conducted across Iraq with a focus on social cohesion and re-integration dynamics. Results of the assessment will be presented during summer 2017.

IOM Iraq Chief of Mission Thomas Lothar Weiss said: “This large-scale assessment by IOM Iraq DTM helps to inform humanitarian operations and build consensus among the main governmental and UN stakeholders to identify key sectoral priorities and needs. As the Mosul crisis continues and thousands more civilians are displaced, the humanitarian community needs to respond to both emergency needs and rebuilding efforts.”

More than 3 million Iraqis continue to be displaced within the country since January 2014.  While new displacement continues, an increasing returnee population is also being monitored across the country. As of 30 March 2017, the DTM has identified more than 1.6 million returnee individuals since 2015.

Now six months into Mosul operations, as of 18 April, DTM has identified more than 331,000 individuals who are currently displaced due to Mosul operations (since 17 October 2016), of whom 170,000 have been displaced in the past two months.

Cumulatively DTM identified more than 424,000 individuals who have been displaced by Mosul operations, and more than 97,000 have returned to their homes.

The latest DTM Emergency Tracking figures on displacement from Mosul operations are available here.

Please click to download the latest:
IOM Iraq DTM Mosul Operations - Data Snapshot - April 18
IOM Iraq DTM Mosul Corridor Analysis - April 17 
IOM Iraq DTM Mosul Operations - Factsheet - April 13

For more information please contact: iraqdtm@iom.int or Sandra Black: +964 751 234 2550, sblack@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:08Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastIraqDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM’s International Dialogue on Migration Sets Stage for Global Compact on Migration Consultations

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:38
Language English

United States - IOM’s two-day (18-19 April) International Dialogue on Migration (IDM) 2017 meeting with the theme, Strengthening International Cooperation on and Governance of Migration towards the Adoption of a Global Compact for Safe, Orderly, and Regular Migration in 2018, gets underway at the United Nations in New York later today.

The IDM gathers States and key migration actors from all relevant sectors to exchange views and identify concrete and implementable actions for strengthening international cooperation and migration governance.

It is an opportunity for States and all relevant migration actors to frame the core objectives for the global compact, and ground it in the existing normative structures and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

IOM Director General William Lacy Swing will say in his opening remarks later today, “The Global Compact presents an historical opportunity to achieve a world in which migrants move as a matter of genuine choice rather than necessity; a world of opportunity to migrate through safe, orderly and regular channels; and a world in which migration is well governed and is able to act as a positive force for individuals, societies and States.”

Ambassador Swing will add that “IOM envisions a global compact, therefore, that will place the needs, capacities and contributions of migrants at its core, with a view to ensuring their safety, dignity and human rights.” 

Central to this IOM vision, Ambassador Swing will add, are four core elements: protecting the rights of migrants; facilitating safe, orderly and regular migration; reducing the incidence and impacts of forced and irregular migration; and addressing mobility consequences of natural and human-induced disasters.

In her opening remarks, Louise Arbour, the Secretary General’s Special Representative for International Migration will say, “It is up to all of us to embrace human mobility, and recognize that good migration governance requires a commitment to genuine cooperation. People in transit and destination countries should not be made to look at migrants as burdens, or even worse as threats to themselves or their way of life.”

Ms Arbour will add, “Instead, we need collectively to strengthen the narrative – one which has the virtue of truth – that recognizes human mobility and diversity as a contribution to evolving societies and strong economies.”

The IDM meeting will seek participants’ recommendations on building coherence within and between the various levels of migration governance, promoting cooperation mechanisms on migration, and identifying concrete elements for a comprehensive global framework.

The meeting will hear from and interact with a number of distinguished panelists such as the UN Deputy Secretary General, Amina J. Mohammed, the President of the UN General Assembly Peter Thomson, the Secretary General’s Special Representative for International Migration, Louise Arbour, the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship of Canada, Ahmed Hussen, the two co-facilitators of the modalities of the GCM process, Permanent Representatives of Switzerland and Mexico and many other distinguished representatives of Governments, civil society, academia and the private sector.

The outcomes from this IDM and the second one scheduled for 18-19 July in Geneva, will feed into the consultation phase of the Global Compact on Migration which will culminate in the stocktaking preparatory meeting in Mexico in December. 

For more information on the agenda and meeting documents please check the International Dialogue on Migration webpage https://www.iom.int/idm-2017-global-compact-migration or contact Azzouz Samri, Head of the Governing Bodies Division at Tel: +41227179468, Email: asamri@iom.int  

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:11Image: Region-Country: AmericaUnited States of AmericaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean: Nearly 9,000 Migrants Rescued in One Weekend, as Total Deaths Reach 900 in 2017

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:38
Language English

Switzerland - Over the three days between Friday 14 to Sunday 16 April, a total of 8,360 migrants were rescued in the Mediterranean by the Italian Coast Guard, the many Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs) rescue ships, Frontex, EunavforMEd and commercial ships.

The migrants were travelling on 55 rubber dinghies, each carrying between 110 and 150 people, and three big wooden boats, carrying 200, 250 and 500 people respectively. Those rescued were brought to various locations in Italy including: Catania, Messina, Augusta, Pozzallo, Palermo, Porto Empedocle, Lampedusa (Sicily), Reggio Calabria, Vibo Valentia (Calabria) and Cagliari (Sardinia).

A total of approximately 32,800 migrants have been brought to land since the beginning of 2017. The total number of arrivals is predicted to reach about 36,000 in the next two days.

So far this year, at least 900 migrants have died or have gone missing while attempting to cross the Mediterranean according to IOM’s Missing Migrants Project.

Improving weather appears to have motivated smugglers to put as many migrants to sea as possible. The overwhelming majority of the rescues occurred off Libya’s coastline, as migrants are sent to sea in overcrowded dinghies, easily overwhelmed by waves.

Almost 90 per-cent of the 900 migrant deaths in the Mediterranean have been recorded on the Libya-to-Italy route. In one incident on 13 April, 23 people were rescued and 97 are estimated to have gone missing (77 men, 15 women, and 5 children from Africa) off the coast of Gargaresh, near Tripoli, Libya. In another incident off the coast of Qarabulli, Libya, on the night of 14 April, 101 migrants were rescued, and 5 migrants died.

Thirteen other bodies were recovered by NGO rescue operations, including the ships of MOAS, Sea Eye, and Jugend Rettet. Between 1 January and 18 April last year, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) recorded 1,263 migrant deaths and disappearances in the Mediterranean. The higher number of deaths at this point in 2016 is largely due to deaths on the Eastern Mediterranean route, in which 376 deaths were recorded between January and 18 April 2016, compared to only 14 so far this year.

By route, the total of missing/dead migrants recorded by IOM’s Missing Migrants Project are:

1 January – 18 April

2017

2016

Western Mediterranean

50

34

Central Mediterranean

849

853

Eastern Mediterranean

14

376

Total

913

1,263

Worldwide, the IOM Missing Migrants Project reports that there 1,421 fatalities through 18 April (see chart, below), with the Mediterranean region accounting for the largest proportion of deaths – over half of the global total. This is just under 1,000 fewer fatalities than were reported at the same point in 2016. However, these data do not account for full reporting from North Africa and the Horn of Africa, two migration corridors where data collection tends to be slower than in other regions.

 

2017

2016

Mediterranean

913

1,263

Europe

15

19

Middle East

13

42

North Africa

198

589

Horn of Africa*

65

91

Sub-Saharan Africa

12

24

Southeast Asia

44

35

East Asia

0

0

US/Mexico

73

67

Central America

20

35

Caribbean

81

39

South America

0

10

Total

1,421

2,214

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 further information please contact:
Joel Millman at IOM Geneva, Tel: +41.79.103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo at IOM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int
Sabine Schneider at IOM Germany, Tel. +49 30 278 778 17 Email: sschneider@iom.int
IOM Yemen, Saba Malme, Sana’a, Tel. + 967 736 800 329 (mobile), Email: smalme@iom.int
IOM Greece: Daniel Esdras, Tel: +30 210 9912174, Email: iomathens@iom.int
or Kelly Namia, Tel: +30 210 9919040, +30 210 9912174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Julia Black at IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Abby Dwommoh, IOM Turkey; Tel: + Direct: +90 (0)312 454 3048| Mobile: +90 (533) 698 7285, Email: adwommoh@iom.int, Mazen Aboulhosn at IOM Turkey, Tel: +9031245-51202, Email: maboulhosn@iom.int
IOM Libya: Othman Belbeisi, Tel +216 29 600389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int  or Christine Petré, Tel. (Direct):  +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int or Ashraf Hassan, Tel +216 29 794707, Email: ashassan@iom.int
IOM Niger: Alberto Preato, MRRM Programme Manager, Tel: +227 8053 5933, E-mail: apreato@iom.int
Hicham Hasnaoui at IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int

For information or interview requests in French:
Florence Kim, OIM Genève, Tel: +41 79 103 03 42, Email: fkim@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo, OIM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:10Image: Region-Country: Europe and Central AsiaSwitzerlandDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Appeals for USD 4.3 Million to Support Peru Flood Victims

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:38
Language English

Peru - As part of the UN Flash Appeal launched last week, IOM as Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) sector lead, is appealing for USD 4.3 million to provide humanitarian aid to the population affected by the floods on the north coast of Peru.

The emergency has affected 24 out of 25 departments of the country and has left nearly 1.1 million people in need of assistance. The department of Piura is the most affected with a third of the population needing urgent assistance.

The National Civil Defence Institute (INDECI –Spanish acronym) estimates that 34,584 houses have collapsed or are uninhabitable and consequently about 173,000 people may be displaced.

Approximately 40,000 people are in temporary shelters, while the number of people in spontaneous settlements and host families is still unknown.

The funds requested by the CCCM sector are to support the Government of Peru in improving information management of displaced families in temporary shelters and spontaneous sites as well as provide technical assistance in camp coordination and camp management.

Priorities include improving shelter conditions, taking into account, protection considerations as well as minimum standards of humanitarian assistance. The funds will also strengthen community participation and two-way communication of families living in shelters and spontaneous sites and also facilitate the identification of sustainable solutions for the displaced population.

The population to be assisted by the CCCM sector is currently in shelters, camps, spontaneous sites and collective centres located in the regions of Piura, Lambayeque, La Libertad and Ancash.

 "The funds requested by the CCCM sector will support the Government in improving the quality of life and dignity of displaced persons in temporary accommodations and facilitate equitable access to services, humanitarian assistance and protection," said Jose Ivan Davalos, IOM Peru Chief of Mission.

The UN Flash Appeal seeks to strength the emergency response efforts being carried out by the Government of Peru by raising USD 38.3 million to provide humanitarian aid to 320,000 people through 88 projects implemented by 25 organizations, including UN Agencies and NGOs.

Download the UN Flash Appeal here: https://www.humanitarianresponse.info/en/operations/peru/document/flash-...

For further information, please contact Inés Calderón at IOM Peru, Tel: +51 1 633 0000, Email: icalderon@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:09Image: Region-Country: AmericaPeruDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Encourages Migrants to Participate in Chile’s 2017 Census

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:38
Language English

Chile - IOM Chile is working with the Ministry for the Economy, Development, and Tourism, the National Institute of Statistics (INE), local governments and civil society organizations to encourage migrants in the country to participate in the 2017 census taking place on 19 April. The census is being carried out to overcome and correct methodological problems in the 2012 census.

Chile has made progress in the past few years in designing public policies that meet migrants’ needs, especially in relation to health, housing and education. Continuing to do so requires up-to-date information, which is why emphasis has been placed on developing strategies to ensure migrants’ participation in the census.

These strategies have centered on publicizing the characteristics and importance of a census, emphasizing that migrants can participate by opening their doors and as interviewers, and that they will not be asked about their migration situation.

The INE has composed the census questionnaires in five languages to facilitate registration in areas with the highest concentration of foreign residents, including Creole for Haitian migrants.

IOM Chile’s Silvia Olego explained that “this census is a good public policy practice and ensures that we all count and that no one is left behind, as the Agenda 2030 indicates.”

The Government of Chile estimates that the migrant population will reach 600,000 in the 2017 census.  In 2014, there were an estimated 411,000 regular migrants.

For further information please contact Valeria Beltran at IOM Chile, Tel. +56 02 9633710, Email: vbeltran@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 18:05Image: Region-Country: AmericaChileDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Ghana and Embassy of France Host Workshop on Migration and Climate Change for Policymakers

Tue, 04/18/2017 - 12:19
Language English

ACCRA – A two-day workshop on Migration, Environment and Climate Change was organized by IOM Ghana in partnership with the Embassy of France on 11-12 April 2017, for representatives of key Ministries and civil society organizations.

Ghana is affected by various sudden and slow onset events which include tropical storms, sea level rise and increasing greenhouse gas emissions. The impact of such events on human mobility is already being felt, particularly in the agricultural sector and in urban centres.

Advances have been made in Ghana with a National Climate Change Policy and a National Climate Change Adaptation Strategy both addressing migration. However, as Mr. John A. Pwamang Acting Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, noted, “In 2015, 19 million people were displaced because of natural disasters around the world, more than twice those displaced due to conflict. We must therefore give priority to this important issue and find innovative ways to address it”.

The workshop sensitized policymakers and practitioners on the migration, climate change and environment nexus. Highlighting that just as environmental degradation and disasters can cause migration, movement of people can also have a significant impact on the environment. H.E. François Pujolas, the French Ambassador to Ghana said “This is a complex issue that requires actors from many different fields to work together. It is encouraging to see representatives from many different Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Civil Society and Development partners come together to discuss this topic”.

The participants were also trained on the specific dynamics of human mobility resulting from sudden onset disasters and slow onset events, including the specific country examples. Other topics covered included challenges in data collection and analysis, regional opportunities and challenges as well as disaster risk reduction.

Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, the Chief of Mission of IOM Ghana noted that “Migration is often misperceived as a failure to adapt to changing environment. It is however one of the main coping and survival mechanisms that is available to those affected by environmental degradation and climate change. This complex nexus needs to be addressed in a holistic manner – and this will only be feasible if the mobility aspect is taken into account in climate change policies.”

At the end of the two-day workshop, participants identified two key issues for Ghana: rural to urban migration and developing a national migration and climate change programme. For each priority area, they set objectives and action plans to address environmental migration in Ghana.

For further information, please contact Joy Paone at IOM Ghana on Phone: +233 030 274 29 30 Email: jpaone@iom.int

Posted: Wednesday, April 12, 2017 - 18:16Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastGhanaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

8,000 People Displaced by Recent Violence in Wau, South Sudan

Wed, 04/12/2017 - 18:18
Language English

South Sudan - A recent upsurge in violence beginning 10 April has displaced an estimated 8,000 people in South Sudan’s Wau town. International Organization for Migration (IOM) teams and relief agencies are providing assistance to new arrivals at existing displacement sites, which had already been hosting nearly 43,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) who had fled their homes due to insecurity in late June 2016.

IOM Displacement Tracking and Monitoring (DTM) teams were deployed to displacement sites in Wau on 11 and 12 April to assess the scale of new displacement.

Between 10 and 12 April, approximately 4,000 people arrived at the protection of civilians (PoC) site adjacent to the UN Mission in South Sudan base, joining more than 25,200 IDPs already sheltering in the site. An additional 3,800 people arrived at the Cathedral site, which has been hosting nearly 8,000 people since June.

“With thousands of people fearful to return to their homes, humanitarian needs in Wau continue to grow,” says William Barriga, IOM South Sudan Chief of Mission. “The displacement figure is likely to increase over the coming days as families continue to seek protection at displacement sites.”

Clashes were intense in areas south and west of Wau town, including near the Nazareth church displacement site. DTM teams observed that many IDPs, who were seeking protection at the Nazareth church compound, have left for the PoC site and Cathedral, in search of more secure areas.

While conditions in the town had calmed by 11 April, IOM received reports of gunfire in south and west areas of Wau on the morning of 12 April and observed additional IDPs moving towards the PoC site.

Difficult living conditions in the already overcrowded displacement sites have been compounded by the influx of new arrivals, stretching limited space and resources. IOM and aid agencies are working to provide services and space to new arrivals despite constraints.

More than 7.5 million people, out of an estimated population in South Sudan of 12 million, are in need of humanitarian assistance, including more than 4.9 million people facing severe food insecurity due to displacement, conflict and economic decline since December 2013.

For further information, please contact Ashley McLaughlin at IOM South Sudan, Tel: +211 922 405 716, Email: amclaughlin@iom.int.

Posted: Thursday, April 13, 2017 - 00:15Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastSouth SudanAnalysis: 

A recent upsurge in violence beginning 10 April has displaced an estimated 8,000 people in South Sudan’s Wau town. International Organization for Migration (IOM) teams and relief agencies are providing assistance to new arrivals at existing displacement sites, which had already been hosting nearly 43,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) who had fled their homes due to insecurity in late June 2016.

Default: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Learns of ‘Slave Market’ Conditions Endangering Migrants in North Africa

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 11:25
Language English

Libya - Over the past weekend, IOM staff in Niger and Libya documented shocking events on North African migrant routes, which they have described as ‘slave markets’ tormenting hundreds of young African men bound for Libya.

Operations Officers with IOM’s office in Niger, reported on the rescue of a Senegalese migrant (referred to as SC to protect his identity) who this week was returning to his home after being held captive for months.

According to SC’s testimony, while trying to travel north through the Sahara, he arrived in Agadez, Niger, where he was told he would have to pay 200,000 CFA (about USD 320) to continue north, towards Libya. A trafficker provided him with accommodation until the day of his departure, which was to be by pick-up truck.

The journey – over two days of travelling – through the desert was relatively smooth for this group. IOM has often heard from other migrants on this route who report seeing the remains of others abandoned by their drivers – and of trucks ransacked by bandits who siphon away their fuel.

SC’s fate was different. When his pick-up reached Sabha in southwestern Libya, the driver insisted that he hadn’t been paid by the trafficker, and that he was transporting the migrants to a parking area where SC witnessed a slave market taking place. “Sub-Saharan migrants were being sold and bought by Libyans, with the support of Ghanaians and Nigerians who work for them,” IOM Niger staff reported this week.

SC described being “bought” and then being brought to his first “prison”, a private home where more than 100 migrants were held as hostages.

He said the kidnappers made the migrants call their families back home, and often suffered beatings while on the phone so that their family members could hear them being tortured. In order to be released from this first house, SC was asked to pay 300,000 CFA (about USD 480), which he couldn’t raise. He was then “bought” by another Libyan, who brought him to a bigger house – where a new price was set for his release: 600,000 CFA (about USD 970), to be paid via Western Union or Money Gram to someone called “Alhadji Balde”, said to be in Ghana.

SC managed to get some money from his family via mobile phone and then agreed to work as an interpreter for the kidnappers, to avoid further beatings. He described dreadful sanitary conditions, and food offered only once per day. Some migrants who couldn’t pay were reportedly killed, or left to starve to death.

SC told IOM that when somebody died or was released, kidnappers returned to the market to “buy” more migrants to replace them. Women, too, were bought by private individuals – Libyans, according to this witness – and brought to homes where they were forced to be sex slaves.

IOM collects information from migrants returning from Libya and passing through IOM transit centres in Niamey and Agadez. “Over the past few days, I have discussed these stories with several who told me horrible stories. They all confirmed the risks of been sold as slaves in squares or garages in Sabha, either by their drivers or by locals who recruit the migrants for daily jobs in town, often in construction, and later, instead of paying them, sell their victims to new buyers. Some migrants – mostly Nigerians, Ghanaians and Gambians – are forced to work for the kidnappers/slave traders as guards in the ransom houses or in the ‘market’ itself,” said an IOM Niger staffer.

During the past week, IOM Libya learned of other kidnapping cases, like those IOM Niger has knowledge of.

Adam* (not his real name) was kidnapped together with 25 other Gambians while traveling from Sabha to Tripoli. An armed Gambian man and two Arab men kidnapped the party and took them to a “prison” where some 200 men and several women were being held.

According to this witness, the captives were from several African nations. Adam explained that captives were beaten each day and forced to call their families to pay for their release. It took nine months for Adam’s father to collect enough money for Adam’s release, after selling the family house.

Adam said the kidnappers took him to Tripoli where he was released. There, a Libyan man found him and due to his poor health condition, took him to the hospital. The hospital staff published a post on Facebook requesting assistance. An IOM colleague saw the post and referred the case to an IOM doctor who visited him in the hospital. Adam spent 3 weeks in the hospital trying to recover from severe malnutrition – he weighed just 35 kilograms – and the physical wounds from torture.

Upon release from the hospital, IOM found a host family who sheltered him for approximately one month, while the IOM doctor and protection colleagues made frequent visits to the host family to provide Adam with food and medication and assist him with his rehabilitation. They also brought him fresh clothes.

Adam was also able to call his family in the Gambia, and after his condition stabilized, he was assisted by IOM Libya’s voluntary returns programme. On 4 April, he returned to Gambia.

The IOM doctor escorted Adam to Gambia where he was reunited with his family and immediately hospitalized. IOM Libya will continue to pay for his treatment in Gambia and he will also receive a reintegration grant.

Another case IOM learned of this month, involves a young woman being held in what she describes as a warehouse near the port in Misrata by Somalian kidnappers. She is believed to have been held captive for at least 3 months, although the exact dates are unknown.  Her husband and young son have lived in the United Kingdom since 2012, and they have been receiving demands for money.

It has been reported that this victim is subjected to rape and physical assault. The husband has paid via family and members of the Somalia community USD 7,500, although they have recently been told the kidnappers are demanding a second payment of USD 7,500.

IOM Libya was informed of this case by the UK Crisis Response and Hostage Negotiation Unit, which is currently following up on the case together with the Libyan Red Crescent (LRC), which has assisted in releases in similar cases in the past.

“The situation is dire,” said Mohammed Abdiker, IOM’s Director of Operation and Emergencies, who recently returned from a visit to Tripoli. “The more IOM engages inside Libya, the more we learn that it is a vale of tears for many migrants. Some reports are truly horrifying and the latest reports of ‘slave markets’ for migrants can be added to a long list of outrages.”

Abdiker added that in recent months IOM staff in Libya had gained access to several detention centres, where they are trying to improve conditions. “What we know is that migrants who fall into the hands of smugglers face systematic malnutrition, sexual abuse and even murder. Last year we learned 14 migrants died in a single month in one of those locations, just from disease and malnutrition. We are hearing about mass graves in the desert.”

He said so far this year the Libyan Coast Guard and others have found 171 bodies washed up on Mediterranean shores, from migrant voyages that foundered off shore. The Coast Guard has also rescued thousands more, he added.

“Migrants who go to Libya while trying to get to Europe, have no idea of the torture archipelago that awaits them just over the border,” said Leonard Doyle, chief IOM spokesman in Geneva. “There they become commodities to be bought, sold and discarded when they have no more value.”

Doyle added: “To get the message out across Africa about the dangers, we are recording the testimonies of migrants who have suffered and are spreading them across social media and on local FM radio. Tragically the most credible messengers are migrants returning home with IOM help. Too often they are broken, brutalized and have been abused, often sexually. Their voices carry more weight than anyone else’s.”

For further information, please contact Giuseppe Loprete, IOM Niger, Tel: +227.980 543 31, Email gloprete@iom.int.

 

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 17:20Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastLibyaThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: 
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 31,993, Deaths: 664

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 11:19
Language English

Switzerland - IOM reports that 31,993 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017 through 9 April, with over 80 percent arriving in Italy and the rest in Spain and Greece. This compares with 172,774 through the first 97 days of 2016. 

Mediterranean Developments

IOM Rome spokesperson Flavio Di Giacomo reported yesterday (10/04) that over 2,100 migrants rescued last week have been brought to Italy since IOM’s last report. Among them were over 500 Bangladeshis and around 50 Syrians – the rest, mostly sub-Saharan Africans.

Among the Bangladeshis and Syrians, Di Giacomo said, were many who had resided either in Libya or Egypt for several years. Many others were reported to have recently left Turkey to make their way to Libya via Sudan.

Di Giacomo said figures from Italy’s Ministry of Interior indicate over 11,000 migrants arrived in Italy via the Mediterranean in March, more than the number arriving in either March 2016 or March 2015. Roughly 27,000 migrants this year have left Libya for Italy through the year’s 99 days – that’s over 7,000 more than the number arriving through the same period last year.

Arrivals to Greece remain low – just over 300 thus far through April, and 4,107 since the beginning of the year. In 2016, during the same period, 150,000 migrants and refugees had entered Greece via sea from Turkey.

Deaths on the Mediterranean through 9 April total 664, almost 90 percent being recorded on the Libya-to-Italy route. During the same period, last year, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) recorded 1,217 – nearly twice 2017’s total – due to the 9 April 2016 incident off the coast of Egypt, where 459 migrants were recorded drowned or missing.

Worldwide, the IOM Missing Migrants Project reports that there 1,183 fatalities through 9 April (see chart, below), with the Mediterranean region accounting for the largest proportion of deaths – over half of the global total. This is just under 1,000 fewer fatalities than were reported at the same point in 2016. However, these data do not account for full reporting from North Africa and the Horn of Africa, two migration corridors where data collection tends to be slower than in other regions.

Comparative table of global totals of MMP data for 1 Jan–9 April 2016 and 2017

 

 

For the latest Mediterranean Update infographic:
http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/170411_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 further information please contact:
Joel Millman at IOM Geneva, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo at IOM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int
Sabine Schneider at IOM Germany, Tel: +49 30 278 778 17, Email: sschneider@iom.int
IOM Yemen, Saba Malme, Sana’a, Tel : + 967 736 800 329 (mobile), Email: smalme@iom.int
IOM Greece: Daniel Esdras, Tel: +30 210 9912174, Email: iomathens@iom.int or Kelly Namia, Tel: +30 210 9919040, +30 210 9912174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Julia Black at IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Abby Dwommoh, IOM Turkey, Tel. (Direct): +90 (0)312 454 3048, Mobile: +90 (533) 698 7285, Email: adwommoh@iom.int or Mazen Aboulhosn, Tel: +9031245-51202, Email: maboulhosn@iom.int
IOM Libya: Othman Belbeisi, Tel: +216 29 600389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int  or Christine Petré, Tel. (Direct):  +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int or Ashraf Hassan, Tel: +216 29 794707, Email: ashassan@iom.int
IOM Niger: Alberto Preato, Tel: +227 8053 5933, E-mail: apreato@iom.int
Hicham Hasnaoui at IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int

For information or interview requests in French:
Florence Kim, IOM Geneva, Tel: +41 79 103 03 42, Email: fkim@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 17:11Image: Region-Country: Europe and Central AsiaSwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Study in Ghana Finds Remittances Nearly Doubled Household Incomes in 2016

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 11:11
Language English

Ghana - On 6 April 2017, IOM launched two studies on remittances in Ghana – a Baseline Assessment of Household Remittances and an Assessment of Remittance-related Services and Practices of Financial Institutions.

The household survey, conducted in partnership with the Ghana Statistical Services (GSS) in six selected districts of the Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions in Ghana, covered 1,200 households, of which 26 percent had received remittances during the last 12-month period. The survey found that the United States of America, the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany were among the highest remittance-sending countries to these six districts.

The total amount of cash received in the 12-month period was 1,361,678 Ghanaian Cedi (GHS) (approximately USD 300,000), with each household receiving an average of GHS 4,663 (approximately USD 1,069). The monetary value of goods received during the same period was GHS 1,042,463 (approximately USD 220,000). Furthermore, the survey showed that the primary use of the remittances received was to buy basic necessities, such as food, clothing and household goods, with a lower priority given to investments or savings.

Presenting the findings of the study, Godwin Odei Gyebi, Head of the Data Production Unit of GSS, noted the significance of these findings and the impact of remittances on receiving households, “Considering that the average annual income in Ghana is approximately USD 1,208, this means a lot for households receiving remittances.”

Joseph Teye from the University of Ghana, who led the qualitative study, noted that it was the poor who suffered the brunt of the high tariffs adopted by Money Transfer Operators (MTOs).

“The higher the amount transferred, the lower will be the fee paid by the remitter. What this means for the poorer migrants, who send small amounts of remittances at a time, is that they will be paying a higher proportion of transfer charges,” said Teye.

The research recommends that the Government of Ghana offer remittance senders and receivers viable and affordable options and improve access to financial services. Other recommendations include bank-to-bank partnerships, facilitating the process for opening bank accounts, as well as improving financial education on savings and investment of remittances. The conclusions from these studies will contribute directly to policy and strategies on the promotion of formal remittances and in turn contribute to the development impact of these transfers in the communities of receipt as well as at a national level.

This dissemination meeting also provided a platform for key actors with different perspectives to discuss and share knowledge on the issue of remittances and their impact on Ghana.

“Discussing remittances means mobilizing various government agencies; banking, finance and telecommunication actors; academics; civil society and migrants,” said Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, IOM Ghana Chief of Mission. “These are not actors that are accustomed to working together. Gathering them around the same table is in itself an achievement, finding common grounds for concrete action is the next challenge,” she continued.

It must not be forgotten that remittances are first and foremost voluntary and private transfers and it is the migrant sender and receiver who decide how remittances will be spent.

The launch was attended by representatives from Ghanaian government agencies, several banks and money transfer companies. It is part of the project, Improving Capacities to Leverage Migrant Remittances for Development in Ghana, funded by the IOM Development Fund, which seeks to develop the capacity of IOM member states to manage migration. 

For further information, please contact Eric Akomanyi at IOM Ghana, Tel: +233 302 742 930, Ext. 2405, Email: eakomanyi@iom.int.

 

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 17:08Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastGhanaThemes: Migration ResearchDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM, CAPMAS Launch New Migration Data Analysis Unit in Egypt

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 11:08
Language English

Egypt - On 6 April, Egypt’s Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS) and IOM launched a new Migration Data Analysis Unit.

The Migration Data Analysis Unit aims to fill in existing information gaps by conducting periodic assessments and producing key statistics on migration issues to support the development of evidence-based policy and enhance migration management in Egypt.

Major General Abu Bakr Al-Guindy, Director of CAPMAS, commenced the launch by thanking IOM for their support in establishing the Unit and building the capacities of its staff. He highlighted the importance of the Unit and its role in supporting policymakers in Egypt. “It is important for the mission and responsibilities of CAPMAS that it supports policymakers with the needed data and evidence, while following correct and up-to-date methodologies and technical approaches in a timely transparent manner,” emphasized Al-Guindy. 

He added that CAPMAS is making daily efforts to develop itself while making use of all available resources and maximizing the benefits from all available resources from the international statistical community, both in terms of cooperation and exchanging experiences.

Amr Taha, IOM Egypt Head of Office highlighted the importance of understanding migration trends to address the realities to be faced in the future.

The establishment of this Unit is part of efforts by the Government of Egypt to harness the positive contributions of migration for development and its initiatives to curb irregular migration to, through and from Egypt while promoting positive alternatives.

In this context, IOM has been supporting the CAPMAS Migration Unit to analyse labour markets in Egypt and abroad to identify opportunities for labour mobility of Egyptians to better plan and maximize the benefits of migration. More specifically, IOM organized two trainings and a study visit to IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre in Berlin for CAPMAS and other government officials to build their capacities in this respect. This support stems from the cooperation between the two agencies to enhance data on migration following IOM’s engagement in World Statistics Day, 20 October 2015, hosted by CAPMAS.

“After the successful support provided to CAPMAS on the Egypt International Household Migration Survey, which looked at the drivers of migration, IOM is now working with the agency to analyse labour markets in Egypt and abroad and seek to provide positive alternatives to irregular migration,” said Taha.

This intervention is funded by the IOM Development Fund and the Government of the United Kingdom under the projects, Developing Capacities for Forecasting and Planning Migration across the Mediterranean and Preventing and Responding to Irregular Migration in Egypt.

For further information, please contact Teuta Grazhdani at IOM Egypt. Tel: +202-27365140, Email: iomegypt@iom.int

 

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 17:04Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastEgyptThemes: Migration ResearchDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM, UNHCR Launch EU-Funded Stability Project in Somalia Addressing Root Causes of Irregular Migration, Displacement

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 11:03
Language English

Somalia - IOM and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) launched two projects funded by the European Union (EU) Emergency Trust Fund aimed at contributing to a sustainable and durable reintegration of refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Somalia and anchoring populations within Somalia.

IOM’s project is entitled, Facilitating Sustainable Return through Laying Foundations for Somalia in the Horn of Africa (FLASH), in Kismayo, Somalia. UNHCR’s project is entitled, Enhancing Somalia’s Responsiveness to the Management and Reintegration of Mixed Migration Flows (RE-INTEG). Each project will take place over a two-year period and is funded with EUR 5 million.

To support Somalia’s recovery, FLASH will increase government capacity in providing immediate assistance to returnees, as well as establish an Inter-Ministerial High Level Task Force on Migration Management. The Task Force will focus on migration related issues and the development of a Migration Governance Framework in Somalia. The funds will also be used to improve data collection, monitoring and planning of population movements. This will be achieved through border management assessments, establishment of mobile immigration units and data collection on returns and reintegration.

An average of over 25,000 Somalis return to Somalia each year, particularly from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and from Yemen.

“The EU’s contribution arrives at a significant time as Somalia faces critical challenges, including drought conditions that have left over 6.2 million people in dire need of humanitarian assistance,” said Gerard Waite, the IOM Somalia Chief of Mission. 

“Additionally, the country is still experiencing an influx of returnees. This project will help the Government establish mechanisms to cope with issues, such as irregular migration and successful reintegration of returnees,” he added.

Since 2013, the EU has generously supported IOM’s interventions in Somalia in support of persons and communities affected by displacement and related protection concerns, including actions on the prevention of child trafficking and gender-based violence (GBV), as well as protection and care for victims in Somalia.

For further information, please contact Julia Hartlieb, IOM Somalia, Tel: +254 731 988 846, Email: jhartlieb@iom.int

 

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 17:00Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastSomaliaThemes: Integrated Border ManagementDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Raises Awareness on Impacts of Irregular Migration in Ethiopia’s Somali Regional State

Tue, 04/11/2017 - 10:57
Language English

Ethiopia - Between 16 March and 3 April, IOM organized a forum theatre event and a soccer tournament at the Dollo Ado, Melkedida and Boklomayu Refugee Camps in Somali Regional State, Ethiopia, to raise awareness on the impacts of irregular migration.

These events for host community and Somali refugee youth were organized in collaboration with Ethiopia’s Administration for Refugee and Returnee Affairs (ARRA), the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS), Right to Play, the Dollo Ado District Youth and Sport Office, and other youth associations.

IOM has led grass-roots awareness-raising on the impacts of irregular migration in Ethiopia, through unique approaches, such as community conversations and forum theatre events. These aimed to enhance and strengthen the existing community-based behavioural change and communication strategy on the prevention of irregular and secondary migration difficulties through youth engagement.

IOM has also provided computers, printers, generators, sportswear, equipment and facilities, multi-media equipment and furniture to youth centres in the region. 

In total, 32 youth teams took part in the soccer tournament in three locations (Dollo Ado District 16, Melkedida Refugee Camp 8 and Boklomayu 8). The winning teams were Iftiin in Dollo, Abasina in Melkedida and Dawa in Boklomayu.

Forum theatre, created as part of the “Theatre of the Oppressed”, is a tool for exploring and rehearsing possible actions that people can take to transform their world. Forum theatre events were staged in 15 public places of Dollo woreda districts for the host community, as well as Melkedida and Boklomayu refugee camps. The audience were young people and people in public areas like schools, market place sport competitions. The forum theatre events reached around 28,000 people from which close to 9,000 were female. The drama and music pieces at the theatre were prepared by members of 15 youth associations.

The awareness-raising through forum theatre and the soccer tournaments was implemented through funding by the Government of Japan. The event was a part of a larger project entitled, Improved Living Conditions of Host and Refugee Communities from Somalia in Ethiopia to Promote Social Cohesion.

For further information, please Alemayehu Seifeselassie at IOM Ethiopia. Tel: +251 911 63 90 82, Email: salemayehu@iom.int.

Posted: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 16:24Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastEthiopiaThemes: Capacity BuildingImmigration and IntegrationMigration and YouthDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM DG Meets with Egyptian Prime Minister in Cairo

Mon, 04/10/2017 - 10:29
Language English

Egypt - IOM Director General William Lacy Swing yesterday (09/04) met with the Prime Minister of Egypt, Sherif Ismail, during his one-day visit to Cairo, where he attended the opening of the 44th session of the Arab Labour Conference.

Ambassador Swing expressed his sincere condolences and heartfelt sympathy, on behalf of IOM, to the Prime Minister and the people of Egypt after the terrorist attack in Tanta on Palm Sunday. He reiterated that IOM stood in solidarity with the Egyptian government and people, and was committed to providing any assistance within its capacity. 

During his visit, Ambassador Swing highlighted the importance of developing a national migration strategy in Egypt with a whole-of-government approach that would contribute to the country’s development, which was not only critical for the upcoming discussions on the Global Compact on Migration, but also for determining Egypt’s own future priorities.

Commending Ambassador Swing on IOM’s work with the Government of Egypt, Prime Minister Ismail welcomed and reaffirmed Egypt’s commitment to advance migration for the country's development. He also recalled that while Egypt hosts millions of migrants and refugees, Egyptian expatriates have an important role to play with almost USD 20 billion in remittances every year.

On labour mobility, Ambassador Swing reiterated IOM’s commitment to support the rehabilitation of vocational training centres, aimed at preparing Egyptian skilled labour to meet national and international labour market needs. This would help ease Egypt’s unemployment problem and address one of the root causes of irregular migration.

It was also noted that following earlier consultations with the Government of Egypt, yearly consultations on migration issues remain a priority to ensure continued cooperation on migration matters.

In December 2016, Egypt and IOM marked 25 years of partnership whereby IOM has been supporting Egypt with programmes ranging from emergency relief to border management, resettlement, migrant assistance and migrant health.

For further information, please contact Amr Taha at IOM Egypt, Tel: +20 2273 65140, Email: iomcairo@iom.int

Posted: Monday, April 10, 2017 - 16:27Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastEgyptDefault: 
Categories: PBN

Aleppo: 10,000 Displaced People, Returnees Reached with Life-Saving Aid

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 11:32
Language English

Syria - On 2 April, IOM reached approximately 10,000 people with lifesaving aid in Aleppo, Syria. In cooperation with partners, IOM teams deployed in the Al-Ansari, Al-Kallaseh and Al-Mohandiseen neighbourhoods of Aleppo distributed over 7,410 core relief packages, including blankets and floor mats, to displaced people and returnees.

More than 140,000 people have been registered in the newly accessible neighborhoods of Aleppo City, but nearly 46,000 people remain displaced in the west part of the city. A United Nations (UN) population profile exercise in 53 localities, covering 7,000 individuals, found that 40 percent of the families are female headed and 18 percent have at least one family member with a disability. Due to the damages in the basic civil infrastructure and residential structure, the needs of people inside Aleppo are huge. Shelter and winterization assistance are still vital until the end of cold season.

IOM teams in Aleppo have noted the needs are great among people returning to the city. Most individuals return with nothing, only to find their houses empty and often destroyed or inhabitable.

“I am on my own now after I lost my husband and son,” said Fatima, a 70-year-old returnee. “I have no breadwinner to help support my basic daily needs. I could not return and stay in my home without assistance.”

Since the beginning of 2017, IOM’s response in Aleppo has helped 79,574 people. Returnees and displaced people have been assisted by the direct distribution of 54,470 regular and winterization core relief items. Over 100,000 returned to East Aleppo from January to March 2017, according to IOM field partners.

IOM also distributed 500 sealing off kits to vulnerable returning families in three Aleppo neighbourhoods: Alsukari, Marjeh, and Al-Fardos. The kits help families improve their living conditions by making their shelter more complete and weather worthy. The kits were installed in collaboration with local partners.

IOM’s response in Aleppo is being implemented through funding contributions from the Government of Japan, the European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO) and the Office of United States Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA).

IOM’s local partners who assist in implementing on the ground in Aleppo are the Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC), Ahl Al Kheir and Al Ihsan.

For further information, please, contact IOM Syria, Maria Rumman, Tel: + 963 9333 11204, Email: mrumman@iom.int  or Shihab Al Kairawan, Tel: + 963 992299330, Email: salkairawan@iom.int.

Posted: Friday, April 7, 2017 - 16:55Image: Region-Country: Africa and Middle EastSyriaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Supporting Over 300 Families Displaced Due to Floods in Mocoa, Colombia

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 11:27
Language English

Colombia - In support of the Government of Colombia, IOM has deployed a team of experts to assess the needs of over 300 families, displaced due to recent extreme weather. Twelve temporary shelters have been set up by local authorities in Mocoa, the municipality in the southeastern part of the country severely affected by the heavy rains on 31 March, which caused the Mocoa, Sangoyaco and Mulata rivers to overflow.

The heavy rains led to an avalanche and floods, which have so far killed 306 people and left 372 people missing. In total, 28 neighborhoods in Mocoa have been affected. 

The situation in urban areas is challenging. Due to damages to the sewerage system, there is no drinking water. Electricity has been suspended in some municipalities of Putumayo. The collapse in the hospital network was also reported. The effects on rural areas are still unclear. 

“IOM knows the emergency area and is supporting the Colombian Government, which established a unified response centre in the municipality to coordinate national and international support,” said Alejandro Guidi, IOM Colombia Chief of Mission. “IOM is also participating in the United Nations Country Humanitarian Team for national and local responses,” he continued. 

IOM’s support will be provided under the Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM) strategy by supplying shelters for displaced persons.

To provide an immediate response to the emergency in temporary shelters, IOM received USD 200,000 from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) on behalf of the United States Government.

These financial resources have enabled the deployment of the IOM team to the affected region to work on the needs assessment, registration of the victims and transportation of affected population. The resources will also enable early recovery activities, as well as the provision of technical support to the Government of Colombia and the UN System on CCCM-related activities, including trainings on shelter management.

In the medium term, IOM has already guaranteed solutions for the economic recovery of 150 affected indigenous families. Additionally, IOM will coordinate with the private sector and other donors to identify potential financial support. 

Mocoa is the capital of Putumayo, one of Colombia’s 32 departments. The department, bordering Ecuador and Peru, has been historically affected by armed conflict.

For further information, please contact Karen Mora at IOM Colombia, Tel. + (57) 1 639 7777, Email: kmora@iom.int.

Posted: Friday, April 7, 2017 - 16:58Image: Region-Country: AmericaColombiaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Briefs National Autonomous University of Mexico on State of Global Migration

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 11:26
Language English

Mexico - On 5 April, Ovais Sarmad, IOM Chief of Staff, gave a keynote address to the Centre for Research on North America (CISAN) at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) on IOM and the state of global migration.

“While some migrants have travelled long distances from their origin countries, more than 60 percent of global migration still consists of people moving to neighbouring countries or to countries in the same part of the world,” noted Sarmad. “In fact, nine of the ten top corridors globally (including Mexico to the United States – this is one the biggest corridors), connect neighbouring countries,” he continued.

“There are firmly established structural factors underlying global mobility and these are unlikely to change any time soon, if ever. It is inconceivable to imagine a world where people would be unable to move to take new jobs, to be reunited with family members, to conduct business, to study or simply to engage in tourism,” Sarmad emphasized during his briefing.

Sarmad detailed five complex and sensitive policy challenges policy makers must contend with when managing migration: forced migration, multiple disasters, distorted narrative on migrants, anti-migrant sentiment and political malaise.

“‘Migration crisis’ is the banner headline that is often used to sum up these crises, but we should perhaps ask: Is this is a truly a ‘migration crisis’ or a ‘crisis of solidarity?’” asked Sarmad.

IOM’s briefing was followed by commentary from Ambassador Martha Ortiz de Rosas, Head of UNAM’s Cátedra Fernando Solana, and Silvia Núñez García, Director of CISAN, on the current challenges for Mexican migrants in North America. 

UNAM is a non-profit institution that was founded in its modern form in 1910 and today is one of the world’s largest public institutions of higher education, with more than 346,000 students and almost 39,500 academics. UNAM’s goal is to serve Mexico and humanity by educating professional committed to transforming Mexico, as well as to do research at the highest level to contribute to resolving national and world problems.

Sarmad concluded by emphasizing the role universities can play in migration. “Universities such as UNAM have a role to play in the global migration management and governance through targeted research and academic initiatives,” he said. “These initiatives could be through inclusion of effective migration management policies and discourse in relevant curriculum of existing or new courses as well as specific teaching programmes at undergraduate, masters and even at doctorate levels,” he concluded.

For further information, please contact Chris Gascon, IOM Mexico, Tel: +52 55 55 36 39 22, Email: cgascon@iom.int

Posted: Friday, April 7, 2017 - 16:54Image: Region-Country: AmericaMexicoDefault: 
Categories: PBN

IOM Hosts Briefing for European Diplomats on Chinese Green Card Reform

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 11:26
Language English

China - China is moving ahead to improve its foreign permanent residence card – the Chinese Green Card – to attract more international talent to boost entrepreneurship and contribute to economic growth.

This week IOM’s China Liaison Office organized a briefing on the Chinese Green Card reforms for Beijing-based consular staff from 14 European Union (EU) member states, Switzerland and Iceland.

The workshop was facilitated by Dr. Huiyao (Henry) Wang, President and Founder of the Centre for China and Globalization (CCG). The CCG is China’s leading think-tank dedicated to researching the globalization of Chinese talent and attracting highly-skilled migrant workers to China.

China introduced permanent resident permits in 2004 and recently introduced new revisions including extending the categories for eligible candidates; lifting the maximum age limits; and refining the social welfare provisions to improve the cards’ usability and acceptance by Chinese institutions and service providers in banking, transportation and other sectors. 

Dr. Wang described a range of talent attraction initiatives being implemented by the Chinese Government at national and regional levels. These include the Thousand Talent Scheme and special Green Card schemes in Shanghai and Guangzhou. 

IOM Head of Office in China, Pär Liljert welcomed the Chinese Government’s continued interest in attracting foreigners and members of the Chinese diaspora to come to China to work, study, conduct research, develop entrepreneurial projects or simply seek family reunification.

The briefing was part of the EU-China Dialogue on Migration and Mobility Support Project, which is implemented by IOM and International Labour Organization (ILO), and funded by the European Union Partnership Instrument.

For further information, please contact Etienne Micallef at the IOM Liaison Office in China, Email: Tel: +86 138 1120 9875, emicallef@iom.int

Posted: Friday, April 7, 2017 - 16:53Image: Region-Country: AsiaChinaDefault: 
Categories: PBN

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 29,811, Deaths: 663

Fri, 04/07/2017 - 11:26
Language English

Switzerland - IOM reports that 29,811 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017 through 5 April, with over 80 percent arriving in Italy and the rest in Spain and Greece. This compares with 172,353 through the first 96 days of 2016.

Mediterranean Developments Total arrivals by sea and deaths in the Mediterranean 2016-2017

IOM Rome spokesperson Flavio Di Giacomo reported that on Wednesday (05/04), a total of 755 migrants were rescued by MOAS’ ship “Phoenix” and the SOS Mediterranée “Aquarius,” whom IOM expects will be brought to land Friday (and not included in the table above).  IOM Rome also reported another 1355 migrants were rescued at sea on Thursday, and that the remains of one migrant were found by the Italian Coast Guard on a dinghy carrying 148 migrants. With arrivals to Italy topping the 25,000 mark, this year’s passage on the Mediterranean’s central route is running more than 25 per cent ahead of last year’s total at this same point. 

IOM Libya’s Christine Petré reported that on the morning of Thursday 6 April, the Libyan Coast Guard was called to a rescue mission off Az Zawiyah. IOM learned that when approaching the migrants’ boat, a smuggler’s boat appeared and began shooting at the coast guard vessel. There was an exchange of gunfire and one of the coast guards was badly injured. According to an IOM source, there were at least two smugglers killed and two others arrested.

Additionally, on Thursday 138 migrants (120 men, 13 women, and five children) were rescued off Zuwara by local fishermen and coast security. The migrants’ boat had engine problems. All migrants were released following the incident and all are in good health.  The total rescued so far in 2017 is 3,977 and 171 bodies retrieved.

At this time, last year, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) recorded 749 Mediterranean fatalities, nearly half of those occurring off Greece in the Eastern Mediterranean. In 2017, so far, 14 fatalities have been recorded on this route, with another 47 recorded off Spain and 602 documented in the waters between Libya and Italy.

Worldwide, the IOM Missing Migrants Project reports that there 1,178 fatalities through 3 April (see chart, below), with the Mediterranean region accounting for the largest proportion of deaths – over half of the global total. This is 461 fewer than were reported at the same point in 2016. However, these data do not account for full reporting from North Africa and the Horn of Africa, two migration corridors where data collection tends to be slower than in other regions.

 

Comparative table of global totals of MMP data for 1 Jan–6 April 2016 and 2017

For the latest Mediterranean Update infographic:
http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/170407_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 further information please contact:
Joel Millman at IOM Geneva, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email: jmillman@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo at IOM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int
Sabine Schneider at IOM Germany, Tel. +49 30 278 778 17, Email: sschneider@iom.int
IOM Yemen, Saba Malme, Sana’a, Tel. + 967 736 800 329 (mobile), Email: smalme@iom.int
IOM Greece: Daniel Esdras, Tel: +30 210 9912174, Email: iomathens@iom.int or Kelly Namia, Tel: +30 210 9919040, +30 210 9912174, Email: knamia@iom.int
Julia Black at IOM GMDAC, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email: jblack@iom.int
Abby Dwommoh, IOM Turkey, Tel. (Direct): +90 (0)312 454 3048, Mobile: +90 (533) 698 7285, Email: adwommoh@iom.int or Mazen Aboulhosn, Tel: +9031245-51202, Email: maboulhosn@iom.int
IOM Libya: Othman Belbeisi, Tel: +216 29 600389, Email: obelbeisi@iom.int  or Christine Petré, Tel. (Direct):  +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int or Ashraf Hassan, Tel: +216 29 794707, Email: ashassan@iom.int
IOM Niger: Alberto Preato, Tel: +227 8053 5933, E-mail: apreato@iom.int
Hicham Hasnaoui at IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email: hhasnaoui@iom.int

For information or interview requests in French:
Florence Kim, IOM Geneva, Tel: +41 79 103 03 42, Email: fkim@iom.int
Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email: fdigiacomo@iom.int

Posted: Friday, April 7, 2017 - 16:52Image: Region-Country: Europe and Central AsiaSwitzerlandDefault: 
Categories: PBN

Pages