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UN Migration Agency Appeals for USD 1.4 Billion to Help over 80 Million People in 50 Countries

IOM - News - Ven, 01/19/2018 - 07:55

Geneva - IOM, the UN Migration Agency, is appealing for nearly USD 1.4 billion to address the needs of over 80 million people in 50 countries in 2018. These vital funds will support people displaced within the borders of their own countries, migrants, refugees and the communities that host them, people returning to their areas of origin and people experiencing or recovering from conflict and natural disasters.

“The world is experiencing more complex emergencies than ever before, with millions of men, women and children struggling to survive,” said Mohammed Abdiker, IOM Director of Operations and Emergencies, from the Organization’s headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. “In terms of internal displacement alone, due to conflict and natural disasters, over 31 million people were newly displaced in 2016 adding to the millions already living in long-term protracted displacement.”

This appeal covers planned activities in crisis prevention and preparedness, emergency response, transition and recovery.

“IOM’s humanitarian programming aims not only to save lives but to help affected communities stabilize, build resilience and find solutions. The long-term impact of our responses is of paramount importance. Whether displaced by drought in Somalia, returning home to a recently liberated neighbourhood in Mosul or a member of the local community in Cox’s Bazar, where over 800,000 Rohingya refugees have settled, millions of people are in need not only of emergency assistance and protection but of innovative support that helps them get back on their feet, more resilient than they were before. This is IOM’s goal for 2018,” said Abdiker.

Information on IOM’s funding needs can be found online in the Humanitarian Compendium.

The planned areas of support include: Shelter and Non-Food Items; Activities to Promote Solutions to displacement, Support Community Stabilization and Transition; Camp Management and Displacement Tracking; Health Support; (Re)integration assistance; Humanitarian Communication; prevention efforts around Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience Building; Psychosocial Support; Counter-Trafficking and Protection of Vulnerable Migrants; Technical Assistance for Humanitarian Border Management; Housing, Land and Property Support; Transport Assistance to Affected Populations; Migration Policy and Legislation Support; Diaspora and Human Resources Mobilization; and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH).

The countries covered include: Afghanistan, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Federated States of Micronesia, Georgia, Guinea, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Lebanon, Libya, Madagascar, Mauritania, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Republic of the Marshall Islands, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, Uganda, Ukraine, Yemen and Zimbabwe.

Most of IOM’s funding needs are coordinated either under the country-specific inter-agency Humanitarian Response Plans or Regional Refugee Response Plans. IOM’s humanitarian funding requirements may change throughout 2018 as the settings in which the Organization works change.

In 2017, IOM humanitarian programming amounted to USD 1.1 billion.

IOM’s overall programme and budget can be accessed here.

For more information, please contact Olivia Headon at IOM HQ, Tel: +41794035365 Email: oheadon@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 19, 2018 - 14:47Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: Multimedia: 

An IOM staff conducts a follow up assessment visit with a Syrian family living in Turkey to see how their assistance is impacting them. Photo: Muse Mohammed / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

In no man’s land between Bangladesh and Myanmar, a Rohingya woman holds her child. Photo: Muse Mohammed / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

IOM Medical staff carry out a fit to travel check on a young Somali boy in Aden prior to his emergency evacuation out of Yemen. Photo: Muse Mohammed / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency Holds Training on Trafficking and Irregular Migration in Somaliland

IOM - News - Ven, 01/19/2018 - 07:54

Somaliland – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, with support from the Government of Japan earlier this month held a training on trafficking, irregular migration and the establishment of a referral mechanism for irregular migrants and Victims of Trafficking (VoTs) in Somaliland.

Thirty-two trainees were drawn from the Human Trafficking Development Agency (HAKAD), the Child Protection Working Group (CPWG), Non-Governmental Organizations and staff from the Migrant Response Centre (MRC). The training was organized with the support of HAKAD having requested IOM for capacity building for its members. HAKAD was formed to combat trafficking and irregular migration.

The training was designed to create awareness and provide conceptual clarity on trafficking and irregular migration. The training also included discussions on how to counter trafficking, irregular migration and the establishment of a referral mechanism. During the training, UNICEF facilitated a session on child protection. Structures for directing or redirecting victims of trafficking and irregular migrants to appropriate and definitive service provision were also reviewed.

IOM spearheaded the formation of the MRC in April 2009 to address protection issues for migrants. The referral system established will facilitate identification, referral, direct assistance, reintegration and protective services for irregular migrants and victims of trafficking based on gender, age and other specific needs.

IOM has previously trained HAKAD on trafficking and irregular migration and also facilitated and supported the agency in developing an action plan to address issues of irregular migration and trafficking.

HAKAD members, representatives from the Ministry of Information, IDP committees and local councillors were also trained by IOM on conducting and supporting community dialogue and conversation on trafficking and irregular migration.

IOM is working closely with HAKAD on raising awareness and creating community conversation, dialogue and debate on trafficking and irregular migration.

In his closing remarks, the Director of HAKAD, Saeed Abdilahi Ahmed said, “I believe that most of the participants who took part in this training did not know the difference between trafficking and smuggling. Through this training we now all know the difference and can identify cases of trafficking.”

Ahmed added, “We also had the chance to get together MRC, HAKAD and CPWG members to identify various activities we can carry out together. We reviewed the referral mechanism and we now have knowledge on how to refer cases that need assistance to the appropriate agencies.”

For more information, please contact Feisal Mohamud at IOM Somalia, Tel: +254721290074 Email: famuhamud@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 19, 2018 - 14:45Image: Region-Country: SomaliaThemes: Capacity BuildingCounter-TraffickingDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM held a training on referral mechanism for irregular migrants and Victims of Trafficking in Somaliland on 8–11 January 2018. Photo: Askar Dayib Abdirahman / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 2,583 in 2018; Deaths Reach 199

IOM - News - Ven, 01/19/2018 - 07:52

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 2,583 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea through 17 January. This compares with 3,156 coming ashore during a similar period in 2017.

 

 

IOM Italy’s Flavio Di Giacomo reported Thursday (18/01) that a total of 1,671 migrants have been rescued in the waters between Libya and Italy in two days: 1,457 on Tuesday and 214 on Wednesday (the overall majority are not included in the above table).

The rescue operations were carried out by NGOs, the Italian Coast Guard, EunavforMed, commercial ships and Italian Navy. Three migrants died (among them two infants). Thursday weather conditions were extremely harsh yet there were reports of migrants’ boats at sea calling for help.

The 1,093 arrivals to Italy through Wednesday (17/01) is less than half the total (2,393) arriving by this time last year.   Since the end of June of 2017, Libya-to-Italy voyages have shown a marked decline, although fatalities on the Mediterranean’s Central Route remain high.

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project records 179 deaths on this route in 2018, compared with 200 at this time last winter (see chart below).

 

Italy and Greece arrivals this year continue a trend that began in 2017, when migrant arrivals along the Mediterranean Sea’s Central and Eastern routes hit their lowest levels in four years (see chart below).

IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported Thursday total land and see arrivals of irregular migrants this month are at 869 (as of 18/01), with sea arrivals totaling 653 migrants, divided between Spain’s southern shores and Balearic Islands (614) the Canary Islands (18) and Ceuta (21). Land arrivals, 216, were recorded at Melilla.

IOM Greece reported Wednesday that over the last week, the Hellenic Coast Guard reported there were at least 4 incidents requiring search and rescue operations off the islands of Lesvos and Samos. The Coast Guard rescued a combined 145 migrants and transferred them to these respective islands.

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) added several deaths to the Mediterranean report this week.  In the Western Mediterranean, two Algerian nationals, a man and a woman, lost their lives in a shipwreck, eight miles north of Cap Falcon in Algeria on 16 January. Seventeen survivors were rescued from the same boat by local civil protection authorities.

In the Central Mediterranean, the Spanish NGO Proactiva Open Arms reported three deaths off the coast of Libya: on 16 January, the bodies of a baby and a young man were found on an overloaded wooden boat during a rescue operation, while on 18 January, the NGO reported the death of another infant from malnutrition and fever on board their ship, while waiting for a medical evacuation that unfortunately did not arrive in time.

MMP lists 199 deaths in the Mediterranean this month, which makes January 2018 the second deadliest month in the region in half a year. Since June 2017 – when 547 migrants or refugees lost their lives on the Mediterranean – only one month, November (with 262 fatalities), saw more deaths than January so far, this with two weeks remaining in the month.

IOM recorded in each of the months of July, August, September, October and December 2017 fewer than 170 migrant deaths on the Mediterranean.

Worldwide, the MMP has recorded the deaths of 235 people during migration in 2018. Besides the Mediterranean casualties MMP recorded one new death in Europe over the past few days: on 13 January, a 30-year-old Moroccan man was hit by a train near Bolzano, Italy. Four migrants already had lost their lives as they tried to move across Europe since the beginning of the year. On the US/Mexico border, a newborn traveling in a family group from Honduras died from hypothermia in Nogales, Sonora, on 15 January.

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

Latest Mediterranean Update infographic:  http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/170719_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, Berlin, 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 71 860 312 ext 109, Mobile: +216 28 78 78 05, Email: mchabbi@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 19, 2018 - 14:46Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency Holds First Reintegration Information Session for Returnees in Gambia

IOM - News - Ven, 01/19/2018 - 07:51

Banjul – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, in collaboration with the HOPE Foundation this week (17/01) held a reintegration information session for 120 returnees in the Gambian capital Banjul. The first such session in the West African nation was organized to address questions pertaining to the reintegration assistance returnees are entitled to receive under the EU-IOM Joint initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration.

Five local companies from various sectors including poultry farming, cashew nut farming, and carpentry, attended the event and discussed their services and products with the participants interested in their activities. Participants also discussed existing job opportunities and signed up for their areas of interests for future trainings.

“We try to reintegrate these young people coming back from Libya with work opportunities. We have the capacity to produce all the poultry needs of this country if we receive enough support,” said former IOM beneficiary Mass Jobe, now the manager of EMPAS Poultry company which offers reintegration job opportunities to youth returnees.

Jobe added, “We were very impressed by the character of the returnees who have demonstrated that they want to make their lives better and transform their lives for the better. We need to help them resettle and make good meaning of their lives.”

“Tell the brothers to stay, irregular migration is not the way. We can change the narrative, we are going to write our own story,” said Cherno Gay, a Gambian poet who attended the information session.

Launched in 2017, the EU-IOM Joint initiative aims at strengthening migration governance and the sustainable reintegration of returning migrants in 13 countries in West Africa (including The Gambia) and Libya.

For more information, please contact Marianna Bertelle, at IOM Gambia; Tel: +2202169647, Email: mbertelle@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 19, 2018 - 14:44Image: Region-Country: GambiaThemes: Assisted Voluntary Return and ReintegrationDefault: Multimedia: 

Gambian returnees sign up for training at a reintegration information session. Photo: Marianna Bertelle/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Humanitarian Situation in DR Congo Reaches Breaking Point as Funding Gap Remains Enormous

IOM - News - Mer, 01/17/2018 - 09:05

Kinshasa – The humanitarian situation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has deteriorated dramatically over the past year due to a massive escalation of conflict and widespread insecurity. Extreme violence has spread to areas typically considered stable, such as the provinces of Kasai and Tanganyika. The situation has been recently compounded by deadly floods and an outbreak of Cholera, among multiple other health emergencies, while the IOM, the UN Migration Agency humanitarian appeal, released at the end of last year, remains vastly underfunded.

Some 4.3 million people are displaced throughout the DRC; 1.7 million of whom were violently forced to flee their homes in 2017. This recent spike of displacement has made the DRC the country with the highest number of internally displaced people in Africa. The majority of newly displaced people say that food is their biggest need and, in some areas, many of them have yet to receive any humanitarian assistance due to lack of funding.

In total, 13.1 million people will be in need of humanitarian assistance throughout the country in 2018. Children, young men, women and ethnic minorities have been among the hardest-hit. More than 4 million children under the age of five are at risk of acute malnutrition. Some 7.7 million people are expected to be impacted by the devastating effects of an acute food emergency, while 10.5 million have limited or no access to healthcare. An estimated 4.7 million women and girls will be exposed to gender-based violence (GBV) in crisis-affected areas in 2018.

“The humanitarian situation in the DRC is at breaking point as is our capacity to respond due to extremely limited funding,” said Jean-Philippe Chauzy, IOM DRC Chief of Mission. IOM is coordinating humanitarian activities in three of these provinces experiencing the highest levels of displacement: Kasai, North Kivu, and Tanganyika. “The stories that Congolese, who have been forced from their homes, are telling us are bone-chilling. They have been through so much already – torture, rape and murder of their loved ones – we cannot stand idly by as they suffer in silence.” 

IOM is appealing for USD 75 million to urgently meet the growing needs of displaced Congolese and the communities hosting them in the eastern and south-central provinces of North and South Kivu, Tanganyika and the Kasai. You can read IOM’s full appeal here.

IOM’s interventions in 2018 will focus on the following sectors: Camp Coordination and Camp Management (CCCM), Displacement Tracking, Shelter and Non-Food Items (NFIs), Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), Health, and Protection, particularly responding to gender-based violence (GBV) and helping unaccompanied or separated children. CCCM, a core activity of IOM in the DRC, ensures equitable access to humanitarian assistance and protection for displaced people, improving their quality of life and conditions. It also includes an advocacy component towards durable solutions for displacement. Data from our displacement tracking activities are utilized by the whole humanitarian community in the DRC.

Since its release, only USD 3.5 million has been given towards IOM’s appeal and in 2017, only 47 per cent of the overall inter-agency Humanitarian Response Plan was funded. This means that vital programmes have been unable to start, leaving thousands of displaced people in need. A revised inter-agency Humanitarian Response Plan is set to be released this Thursday (18/01).

“Funding levels are at their lowest for many years, with DRC seeming to have “fallen off the map” for many donors, at a time when we are facing vastly increased humanitarian needs. This is a worrying trend that we hope does not continue throughout 2018. Around the world, displaced people have similar needs, whether it is shelter, health or protection, we need to see a similar level of funding to other crises, ensuring that the needs of displaced Congolese are met appropriately,” said Chauzy.

For more information, please contact:

Olivia Headon in IOM HQ, Tel: +41794035365, Email: oheadon@iom.int

Jean-Philippe Chauzy in IOM Kinshasa, Tel: +243 827 339 827, Email: jpchauzy@iom.int    

Language English Posted: Wednesday, January 17, 2018 - 09:02Image: Region-Country: Republic of the CongoThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Chinese, European Criminal Investigation Specialists Meet to Coordinate Anti-Trafficking Efforts

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 10:47

China – The UN Migration Agency (IOM) has organized a two-day seminar in Sanya, Hainan island, on “Facilitating of Exchanges & Establishment of Networks between Chinese & European Anti-Trafficking Criminal Investigation Specialists.”

The meeting, which started today, brought together officials from China’s Ministry of Public Security’s Office of Combatting Trafficking, provincial officials, and experts from EUROPOL, the European Union (EU) Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation, together with investigators from Germany, Spain, Denmark, United Kingdom and Switzerland.

The seminar was part of the EU-China Dialogue on Migration Mobility Support Project (MMSP) and was to designed to enhance knowledge exchange on techniques and procedures to standardize operations and policy frameworks related to counter-trafficking.

Delegates reviewed relevant legislation and trafficking investigation case studies, with a particular focus on victim assistance and protection, and the role of international cooperation in prosecuting trafficking offences.

The meeting was the third MMSP activity devoted to counter trafficking, highlighting the importance attached to the issue by the Chinese authorities. In 2016 and 2017, IOM under MMSP organized workshops in Nanjing and Nanning on international standards for identifying and assisting victims of trafficking. Ministry of Public Security and Provincial Security Bureau officials attended from several provinces from around China.

A EUROPOL expert also took part in the Nanning workshop, highlighting the developments in collaboration between the EU and China, which led to the signing of an Agreement on Strategic Cooperation between Europol and the Ministry of Public Security in April 2017.

China has been increasingly proactive in combating human trafficking. According to the Ministry of Public Security, in 2014 there were 978 prosecutions of cases involving trafficking in women and children. Public security authorities rescued over 30,000 women and some 13,000 children.

China is also involved in an on-going legislative reform process that recently led the Supreme People’s Court to issue a key interpretation of Chinese trafficking law covering the trafficking of foreign women into some regions of China for forced marriage and prostitution.  

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

 

Language English Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:53Image: Region-Country: ChinaDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Migrant Figures, Migrant Futures: IOM Paris Forum Demonstrates How Data Help Manage Human Mobility

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 09:09

Paris – IOM, the United Nations Migration Agency, convenes in Paris this week (15-16 January), the world’s first International Forum on Migration Statistics, with partners Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the UN’s Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA).

The latest UN figures suggest that there are 257 million migrants in the world. Migration is one of the most important policy issues globally. Yet, apart from its overall size, very little is known about it. As the late Peter Sutherland, former Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Migration noted, “The global community is still struggling to establish basic facts, such as who migrants are, where they are, where they come from and where they have moved to.”

Investing in migration data could potentially bring huge benefits for migrants and governments alike. For example, a forthcoming IOM and McKinsey report finds that data could help to increase the income of migrants in the European Union by EUR 5-7 billion if migrants were able to fully utilize their skills. Better data could also help to increase the money that migrants send back home by USD 15-20 billion or help identify double the number of trafficking victims.

IOM Director General William Lacy Swing says that governments lose out on large benefits if data is not used to its full potential. “Too often, data are seen as the abstract business of experts operating in backrooms. Yet data are essential to produce real-life results such as protecting migrants in vulnerable situations, fill labour market shortages and improve integration, manage asylum procedures, ensure the humane return of migrants ordered to leave or increase remittance flows,” said DG Swing in the new IOM-McKinsey report.

Part of the problem is lack of data. For example, approximately half of the countries in the world do not include a question in their census asking when the migrant arrived, which makes it difficult to distinguish between long-term and short-term migrants. And 17 per cent of countries in Africa have not conducted a census in the last 10 years. Lack of good quality data limits policy makers’ ability to manage migration, plan ahead and allocate resources.

Another problem: we are not making the best use of the vast amounts of data which are already being produced. Data can be scattered across various agencies within countries and between countries making it difficult to obtain a comprehensive picture of migration trends. We live in an era of “Big Data” where vast amounts of data are continuously generated by mobile devices and web-based platforms. For example, smugglers and people seeking the services of smugglers regularly use social media. These sorts of data could give us a range of different new insights into the dynamics of migration but have yet to be fully analysed.

We also need to communicate better the key facts and figures about migration. Often, the general public is misinformed about migration. Global polls show that people often overestimate the number of migrants that live in their country. 

Some advances have been made recently. IOM’s Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC) launched a Global Migration Data Portal in December 2017. It provides easy access to migration facts and figures from topics as diverse as international migration statistics, refugees and asylum seekers, trafficking, remittances, migration policies, and public opinion.

IOM is hosting several discussions at this week’s Forum in Paris. Harry Cook, IOM Data Management and Research Specialist presented on Monday (15/01) a panel on Measuring Trafficking in Persons.

The panel explored different methodologies to measure both the detected and non-detected side of human trafficking at global and national levels, including the new Counter Trafficking Data Collaborative. Participants discussed solutions for the monitoring of Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) indicators connected to trafficking in persons.

To learn more about the Forum please visit: http://www.oecd.org/migration/forum-migration-statistics/

Find infographics and interactive graphics at www.migrationdataportal.org

For more information please contact, Frank Laczko, IOM GMDAC, Tel: +499114300160, Email: flaczko@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:56Image: Region-Country: FranceDefault: Multimedia: 

The first International Forum on Migration Statistics gathered close to 700 statisticians, researchers, policy makers and representatives from civil society. Photo: OECD

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 1,916 in 2018; Deaths Reach 194

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 09:06
Language English

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 1,916 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea through 14 January. This compares with 3,046 coming ashore during a similar period in 2017.

IOM Italy’s Flavio Di Giacomo reported Monday (15 January) that last Thursday IOM learned that 263 migrants were rescued from a sailing ship of unknown registry and taken to the port of Crotone in Calabria, Italy.  IOM staff had the opportunity to speak with the disembarking migrants, who were mainly Pakistani, Iraqi, Syrian and Afghan.

According to their testimony, these migrants left Antalya, Turkey on a sailboat on 6 January, led by a smuggler of Russian nationality. Each paid from USD 5,000 to USD 12,000 for the trip, sums paid by their families. Many said they had relatives in France, Germany, Great Britain, among other places.

These witnesses said the smuggler threatened them with a firearm until he abandoned the boat after two days of navigation. When the sailboat encountered a storm, it began to take on water and became unstable. Three days out, the migrants, in a state of great agitation and fear, called for rescue, which arrived through the Italian Coast Guard and Guardia di Finanza patrol boats.

“As strange as it may seem, it is not the first time that we have recorded the arrival of a sailboat with migrants leaving from Turkey,” explained Federico Soda, Director of the IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean.
He added: “It is a known phenomenon, but numerically very residual (about 1,000 arrivals from Turkey in 2017) compared to the total number of arrivals. We cannot therefore speak of a new route or be too surprised by this news. Rather this is an example of a less-used route, which involves enormous risks for migrants, who in this case have been lucky enough to survive a storm they had to face in very difficult conditions.”

The 841 arrivals to Italy through Sunday (14 January) is about one-third the total (2,355) arriving by this time last year.  Since the end of June of 2017, Libya-to-Italy voyages have shown a marked decline, although fatalities on the Mediterranean’s Central Route remain high. IOM’s Missing Migrants Project records 176 deaths on this route in 2018, compared with 200 at this time last winter (see chart below).


Italy and Greece arrivals this year continue a trend that began in 2017, when migrant arrivals along the Mediterranean Sea’s Central and Eastern routes hit their lowest levels in four years (see chart below).


 

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) in Berlin reported that in the Western Mediterranean the remains of two migrants were found at different locations off the coast of Algeria: on 12 January, local fishermen found a body entangled in their fishing nets near Mostaganem. He was identified as a 23-year-old local resident of the town of Abdelmalek Ramdane, and he had been reported as missing by his family since he attempted to cross to Spain two months earlier. On 13 January, another body washed up in Zemmouri El Bahri beach, near Boumerdès in Algeria.

Eighteen migrants have lost their lives in the Western Mediterranean since the beginning of the year, compared with 25 fatalities recorded in these waters during the first two weeks of 2017.

Worldwide, the Missing Migrants Project has recorded the deaths of 215 people during migration in the first two weeks of 2018. This compares to 276 at this time last year (see chart below).

Beside the two new Mediterranean deaths, seven migrants died trying to reach Spain’s Canary Islands from North Africa on 15 January: the Spanish Maritime Safety Agency reported five bodies were found in a large rubber boat near the island of Lanzarote. Another two migrants who were retrieved from the sea died later. Twenty migrants made it to the shore; two of those have been hospitalized with signs of hypothermia.

Two fatal incidents were recorded in Europe in recent days: on 11 January, a 26-year-old Afghan man was hit by a vehicle in the A14 motorway near Castel San Pietro in Bologna, Italy. On 14 January, a 28-year-old Gambian man died after being electrocuted on the roof of a train travelling from Ventimiglia in northern Italy to Menton, France.

In the Caribbean, the death toll from last week’s (10 January) shipwreck of a small motorboat carrying migrants from Venezuela to the coast of Curacao rose to five, after the body of another Venezuelan migrant was found last Friday, 12 January. Local authorities said they had accounted for 16 survivors of the shipwreck.

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

Latest Mediterranean Update infographic: http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/170714_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, 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, Berlin, 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 71 860 312 ext 109, Mobile:  +216 28 78 78 05, Email: mchabbi@iom.int

Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:55Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency Helps Bangladesh Police Tackle Trafficking Threat to Rohingya Refugees

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 09:05

Bangladesh – Human trafficking experts from IOM, the UN Migration Agency, are this week working with police in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh to help them tackle the threat of human trafficking facing thousands of vulnerable Rohingya refugees living in local settlements.

Tomorrow (17/01), 55 police and other law enforcement officers will attend a workshop run by IOM counter trafficking specialists aimed at raising awareness of different forms of trafficking and identifying ways in which the authorities and IOM can work together to prevent trafficking, identify victims and provide victim support. The training is one of several IOM counter trafficking initiatives in Cox’s Bazar.

“Rohingya children, women and men are targeted by traffickers who seek to exploit them in various situations including the sex industry, as unpaid domestic help, and in other forms of bonded labour. There is no single solution to ending trafficking and it is vital that aid agencies and the authorities work together to build skills and share information about this extremely serious issue,” said IOM counter trafficking specialist Emmy  Nurmila Sjarijono.

This week’s workshop follows a pilot IOM counter trafficking workshop with Bangladeshi police organized in December 2017. "These trainings are useful for our country and the Bangladeshi people. We work at the grassroots level with vulnerable people, so [we would like] more of our staff to receive trainings like these,” said Mazharul Islam, Assistant Adjutant with the Ansar law enforcement agency, who took part in the December workshop.

“I particularly appreciated the clarification of the difference between trafficking in persons and smuggling of migrants and how they are connected. It was interesting to learn that trafficking not only happens across international borders, but also inside the country, and takes different forms, not just forced prostitution," he said.

As lead agency on trafficking in the Rohingya refugee camps -  where over 656,000 people have settled after fleeing violence in Myanmar in the past four months - IOM is rolling out a series of awareness raising initiatives among the refugee population, as well as working with the authorities. It has also created safe spaces for women in the settlements.

Hundreds of majis, community leaders within the camps, are among those currently receiving IOM information in verbal and picture form about how to identify possible trafficking attempts involving men, women and children, and what to do if they suspect that people are being targeted.

IOM also offers counselling and support services to survivors of trafficking and shelter facilities for those who have escaped or been rescued from trafficking situations.

“Trafficking was already a problem in Cox’s Bazar before the most recent influx of refugees from last August,” said Sjarijono. “With so many more people now at risk, it is vitally important to work together with the police and other authorities to prevent an increase in trafficking victims over the coming months.”

For more information please contact Fiona MaGregor at IOM Cox’s Bazar, Email: fmacgregor@iom.int, Tel. +8801733335221.

Language English Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:54Image: Region-Country: BangladeshDefault: Multimedia: 

The Kutupalong Refugee camp near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh. Photo: Muse Mohammed

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

South Sudan Communities Receiving Regular Aid in Previously Inaccessible Areas

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 09:04

Wau – For over a month, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has been able to provide consistent primary health care in Greater Baggari, South Sudan, which is an area south of Wau town that had been cut off from assistance for over a year. Improved access in recent months has enabled IOM to reach people living further south with lifesaving assistance.

Only weeks after the crisis erupted in June 2016, humanitarian access to Baggari – an hour’s drive from Wau town – was restricted. Displaced people and host communities were cut off from both relief aid and markets. In the months that followed, frequent insecurity further forced many people to flee to harder to reach areas, deeper into the bush.

As part of a multi-agency effort, IOM regained access to the area in August 2017 and conducted a distribution of shelter and relief items. Although additional impediments continued to make access difficult in the weeks that followed, IOM and other relief agencies have had consistent access to the area since October.

Due to restricted access and constraints on livelihoods, food insecurity and malnutrition in Baggari are among the highest in all of South Sudan. In response to dire needs, IOM opened a clinic in Farajallah, Greater Baggari, on 11 December and hired five people from the community to operate it. IOM’s Wau-based medical team visits the clinic once a week to refill supplies and vaccines, maintain the cold chain and provide capacity-building and technical expertise.

“Many people are arriving at the clinic exhausted and dehydrated, some walking as long as four hours from remote areas, like Congoulesi,” explained Dr. Mary Alai, an IOM Migration Health Officer based in Wau. “As access continues to open, we plan to conduct outreach missions to reach further into these remote areas to offer these much-needed services. Consistent access is critical to prevent a further deterioration of health conditions.”

Since December 2017, the clinic has conducted over 970 consultations and seen an increase in the number of consultations as information of the clinic’s presence reaches communities living in remote areas.

In addition to health and shelter assistance, IOM conducted a four-day Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) intervention in November last year to repair boreholes, conduct hygiene promotion and form water management committees. In the coming weeks, IOM will conduct further needs assessments in Baggari and continue providing much-needed aid.

An estimated 40,500 people remain in displacement sites in Wau town, in addition to those in remote areas. Although some families have begun returning home, concerns regarding security conditions continue to inhibit many people from leaving displacement sites, according to an intentions survey conducted by IOM last December.

Since June 2016, IOM has offered multi-sector humanitarian assistance to the affected population in Wau with support from the USAID Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA), the Government of Japan, the European Commission Directorate-General for European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations (ECHO), the Department for International Development (DFID), the Government of Canada and the Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF).

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

Language English Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:52Image: Region-Country: South SudanDefault: Multimedia: 

A medical assistant conducts a health consultation at the clinic in Farajallah, Baggari. Photo: Ashley McLaughlin/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

An IOM midwife provides technical training and advice to a clinical assistant at the clinic in Farajallah, Baggari. Photo: Ashley McLaughlin/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency in Niger Helps Over 10,000 Migrants Return Home in 2017

IOM - News - Mar, 01/16/2018 - 09:00

Niamey – The UN Migration Agency (IOM) in Niger assisted more than 10,000 migrants to return home in 2017. The returnees included Nigeriens and third-country nationals, mostly from Sub-Saharan countries.

In 2017, a total of over 3,500 Nigerien migrants were assisted with voluntary humanitarian return (VHR) from Libya and over 7,000 third-country nationals were assisted with voluntary return (AVR) to their countries of origin.

For the migrants assisted at IOM’s five open-type transit centres in Niger in 2017, IOM provides food, water, shelter, medical and psychological support, and assistance with travel documents.

For the Nigerien nationals arriving by charters, IOM provides technical and logistic support for registration, profiling, and reception – all under the Migrant Resource and Response Mechanism (MRRM) financed by the European Union.

Furthermore, IOM organizes transportation back to communities of origin, and, at times, may also provide escorts from airports and bus stations back to migrants’ hometowns or villages. Migrants also are provided pocket money to cover incidental expenses during their journeys.

For the safe implementation of the assisted voluntary and reintegration programme, the UN Migration Agency in Niger partners with the Government of Niger, various national and international stakeholders such as migrants, civil society and governments in countries of origin.

Out of the 3,500 Nigerien migrants assisted from Libya, more than 3,000 arrived this past December on six separate charter flights organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Niger as well as with the Niger Embassy in Tripoli, which operates under the initiative of President of Niger Mahamadou Issoufou and Prime Minister Brigi Rafini.

One returnee, Rabiu, came back on one of the charter flights of migrants evacuated from Libya last month. He had spent two years in Libya during which he witnessed murder, torture and abuse. “Even if I don’t have anything today, I am happy to be back. I am alive and I get to see my family tonight,” he said.

To facilitate the returns, IOM liaises with consulates, embassies and Nigerien authorities to obtain identity documents since as close to 77 per cent of migrants assisted with voluntary return do not have any identification papers. These valuable partnerships established between IOM and these stakeholders have contributed to the safe implementation of the Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) programme from start to finish.

“Migrants are increasingly seeking IOM’s support to return safely to their homes, once they realize that they are being exploited by smugglers on migratory routes,” said Giuseppe Loprete, IOM Chief of Mission in Niger.

All migrants assisted with voluntary return are entitled to reintegration assistance. Twenty reintegration micro-projects were set up in 2017 in five countries of origin: Senegal, Mali, Cameroon, Guinea-Conakry and Guinea-Bissau. Six hundred more individual projects were also implemented in Niger and countries of origin.

“More than 6,700 returnees have benefitted from reintegration projects in Niger and in countries of origin this past year. By offering them the option of reintegration, we not only give them the option to go home, but also to start over in their communities,” Loprete added.

In 2016, more than 5,000 migrants were assisted with voluntary return whereas in 2015 a little over 1,700 were assisted. This represents only the beginning of a bigger scaling up operation which has become a priority for all missions in the region, including Niger.

For further information, please contact Giuseppe Loprete, IOM Niger, Tel: +227 92199503, Email: gloprete@iom.int

Language English Posted: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 - 15:52Image: Region-Country: NigerDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM staff assisted more than 3,000 Nigerien migrants evacuated from Libya in December 2017.

IOM welcome 430 Nigerien migrants arriving with the sixth charter from Libya in December 2017. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 

After spending two years in Libya and having witnessed various atrocities, Rabiu returned to Niger in December 2017. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM)

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

First International Forum on Migration Statistics Begins Today

IOM - News - Lun, 01/15/2018 - 00:49

Paris – The first International Forum on Migration Statistics begins today (15/01) in Paris. The Forum, organized jointly by IOM, the UN Migration Agency, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) gathers close to 700 statisticians, researchers, policy makers and representatives from civil society. It offers a space for exchanging views on how to improve and innovate existing data collection to better understand global migration trends, drivers and impacts, and to support policy evaluation.

The two-day event at the OECD Conference Centre in Paris will consist of five plenary sessions and close to forty parallel sessions. The opening ceremony will be presided by OECD Secretary-General, Angel Gurría; IOM Director General William Lacy Swing; and UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Liu Zhenmin.

“More and more, we are finding that without access to reliable, comprehensive and global data, managing migration policy becomes a game of blind man’s bluff. As we prepare to meet at this forum, we need to consider migration’s human faces, of course. But we have to always keep in mind that we can’t begin to put smiles on those faces until we first grapple with the data,” said IOM Director General William Lacy Swing in a recent statement.

IOM Deputy Director General, Ambassador Laura Thompson, will moderate the 4th plenary session on data innovation and big data for migration. Other IOM representatives speaking at the #IFMStats include Frank Laczko, IOM Director of the Global Migration Data Analysis Centre (GMDAC); and Jacqueline Weekers, IOM Head of Migration Health Division, among others. 

The event will explore the challenges for improving the production and use of migration data, and will also delve deep into specific themes. For instance, a plenary session is devoted to exploring how public opinions on migration and migrants are formed, and how these can change by facing well-communicated facts. Other topics include big data for migration, as well as building the capacity for emerging economies and developing countries to produce migration statistics.

The Forum aims to become a bi-annual space, as part of the implementation strategy of the Global Compact for Migration (GCM), for producers and users of migration-related data to share their views, identify gaps and highlight needs for training and capacity building. The event is supported by partner organizations including ILO, UNHCR, UNODC, Eurostat and UNECE.

For more information, please contact Jorge Galindo, IOM HQ, Tel: +417179205, Email: jgalindo@iom.int

 

Language English Posted: Monday, January 15, 2018 - 07:48Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandDefault: Multimedia: 

IOM Director General William Lacy Swing (right) at the first International Forum on Migration Statistics which began today (15/01) in Paris, organized jointly by IOM, OECD and UNDESA. Photo: OECD

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency Welcomes UN Secretary General’s Report – Making Migration Work for All

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:22

 

New York – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, welcomed Thursday (11/01) the release of the UN Secretary General’s report, Making Migration Work for All. The Report comes at a crucial time in the process to develop a global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration, and will serve as an important contribution to global discourse on international migration.

Making Migration Work for All provides a forward-looking analysis and vision, and a principled approach to thinking about contemporary challenges around migration, and how to address them,” said Michele Klein Solomon, IOM Director for the Global Compact for Migration.

Making Migration Work for All recognizes the need to address the factors that compel people to leave their homes in search of safer, better lives. Strong emphasis is rightly placed on whole of government and whole of society approaches at the local, national, regional and global levels, with genuine partnerships not only between governments but with employers, unions, civil society entities and migrants themselves, amongst others, to manage migration.  

The Report makes note of the fact that most of the world’s 258 million international migrants already move through safe, orderly and regular means, and that they bring significant benefits to their destination and origin countries.

The report notes, for example: migrants spend, on average, some 85 per cent of their earnings in their host countries, thereby not only addressing skills and labour shortages there, but also contributing directly to economic growth through consumption of goods and services locally.  Moreover, migrants remit homeward 15 per cent of their earnings – in 2017 some USD 600 billion, per World Bank estimates – to the benefit of their families and communities in sender countries which, for many, is a lifeline.  

Nonetheless, many countries today confront significant challenges surrounding migration governance.

With migration an expanding global reality, the Report brings a fresh coherence to the migration narrative. It challenges governments to put in place comprehensive national systems to manage migration, based on the rule of law.  It places rightful emphasis on the need to maximize the benefits that migration offers.

IOM particularly commends the Report’s commitment to the notion that migration should be a matter of choice, not necessity, as well as the importance it attaches to protecting the rights of all migrants. IOM shares the UN Secretary General’s concern about migrants in vulnerable situations, including those in large and mixed flows and those affected by the growing effects of environmental degradation and climate change. The emphasis of the Report on addressing irregular migration is also particularly welcome.

“The best way to end the stigma of illegality and abuse around migrants is, in fact, for governments to put in place more legal pathways for migration,” said UN SG Antonio Guterres. “This will remove incentives for individuals to break the rules, while better meeting the needs of markets for foreign labour.”

Echoing discussion during the consultations phase of the global compact process, the Report places a priority on ensuring adequate regular pathways for migrants to access labour market opportunities at all skills levels. These pathways should be based on labour market and demographic assessments in countries of destination, not only for today but for decades to come.

This is but one of the measures the Report proposes to reduce both the incidence and risks of irregular migration and informal employment of migrants.  Partnerships for skills development are one innovative proposal for addressing skills deficits in destination countries while benefiting countries of origin through training of their labour force.  Another would be cross-border ethical recruitment initiatives that are rightly identified as promising for reducing both the costs and risks to migrants. 

At the same time, Making Migration Work for All clearly recognizes that governments retain the authority to determine the conditions of entry and stay of migrants, consistent with international standards, and recognizes countries’ legitimate security concerns as well. The Report stresses that migration is not, per se, a threat and emphasizes the importance of ensuring cooperative approaches to human, state and public security, including on border management and returns. 

Importantly, the Report places the migration narrative in a positive light, putting people at its centre. Making Migration Work for All recognizes the positive contributions of migrants and migration to inclusive growth, sustainable development and reducing inequalities within and between states over the long term. 

IOM supports the call to Member States to put in place a follow-up and review mechanism for the compact to ensure continued yet flexible progress, and notes the Secretary General’s intention to look at how the UN, including IOM, can best organize itself to support Member State implementation of whatever commitments they make in the compact.

As the Report stresses, this needs to be consistent with his overall reform efforts as well as SDG follow-up and implementation. 

The UN Migration Agency looks forward to continuing to engage closely with all partners as the process to develop a global compact for migration progresses. IOM believes that the development of a global compact for migration presents an historic opportunity to improve the lives and dignity of migrants as well as the ability of governments to manage migration.

The full report can be accessed here.

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

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:18Image: Region-Country: SwitzerlandThemes: Migration ResearchUNDefault: Multimedia: 

UN Secretary-General António Guterres joined a UN and IOM relief distribution in eastern Dominica. File photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 1,476 in 2018; Deaths Reach 192

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:21

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 1,476 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea through 11 January, with around 600 each landing in Italy and Greece and the remainder in Spain. This compares with almost an identical number – 1,159 – coming ashore during a similar period in 2017.

IOM Libya’s Christine Petré cited Libyan Coast Guard sources Wednesday (9 January) who reported that up to 100 migrants remain missing in the third deadly shipwreck on the Mediterranean Sea since last Saturday (6 January). Now, less than midway through January there already are reports of close to 200 migrants or refugees dead or missing on the Central Mediterranean route.
By contrast, IOM recorded just 26 migrant deaths on the Mediterranean Sea lanes during the month of December 2017, at a time when Mediterranean migrant deaths were dropping sharply.
IOM reported on Tuesday 9 January that a total of 81 Mediterranean Sea deaths of migrants or refugees were recorded in the first eight days of the year. Five of those deaths were in Western Mediterranean waters off Spain and Morocco. The rest – 76 with a possibility of many more – were recorded in the waters between Italy and Libya.
In the latest incident on the Central Mediterranean route, on Tuesday, three rubber boats with 279 migrants (19 women, 243 men, 13 boys and four girls) were rescued by the Libyan Coast Guard, whose rescue operation lasted at least 12 hours.
IOM, the UN Migration Agency, was present at their disembarkation point in Tripoli and provided food and water to all survivors. According to survivors’ testimonies, around 100 migrants remain missing.
Survivors told IOM the boats departed from near the Libyan coastal towns of Azzawiyah and Al Khums. The majority of the survivors came from African countries including The Gambia, Senegal, Sudan, Mali, and Nigeria. The Libyan Coast Guard reported that seven survivors are from Bangladesh (one woman) while two are from Pakistan.
“It’s very distressing that during the first 10 days of 2018 we have seen more than 700 migrants rescued or intercepted off the Libyan coast with more lives lost at sea,” said Othman Belbeisi, IOM Libya Chief of Mission. “More has to be done to reduce irregular unsafe movements of people along the Central Mediterranean route.”
IOM Athens’ Kelly Namia said Thursday that over the last three days the Hellenic Coast Guard reported three incidents requiring search and rescue operations off the islands of Lesvos and Samos. The Coast Guard rescued a combined 109 migrants and transferred them to these respective islands.
Almost 200 migrants came ashore at Lesvos, Samos and Chios islands on New Year’s Day, and another 250 over the following five days.
Italy and Greece arrivals this year continue a trend that began in 2017, when migrant arrivals along the Mediterranean Sea’s Central and Eastern routes hit their lowest levels in four years. (see chart below).

IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported on Thursday (11/01) that the arrivals to Spain from 1 January until are 497, out of which 285 arrived by sea and 212 by land, that is, to Spain’s Melilla enclave in North Africa.
IOM Spain also sent the final figures of irregular migrant arrivals in 2017, as reported by the Spanish Ministry of Interior (see chart below):

IOM’s Missing Migrants Project (MMP) in Berlin reported that in the Western Mediterranean 43 migrants were rescued from a sinking boat on 9 January. The remains of three people were recovered from that vessel. According to testimonies of survivors, an estimated eight people remain missing and are presumed dead. Total fatalities on this route through 11 days this year now stand at 16.
Worldwide, IOM’s Missing Migrant Project (MMP) has recorded the deaths of 203 people during migration in the first ten days of 2018, compared with 40 at this point in 2017.
Deaths recorded in the Mediterranean so far in 2018 total 192 – compared with 12 through the first ten days of 2017.
Within Europe one young man died on 9 January while trying to migrate: he was hit by a truck in the A16 motorway near Calais, France.
On the US-Mexico border, the skeletal remains of two migrants were found on 8 January within Texas ranch land near the US Border Patrol Falfurrias checkpoint.
In the Caribbean, the bodies of four Venezuelan migrants were found in a beach in Koraal Tabak, Curaçao, on 10 January.  Additionally, the Missing Migrant Project recorded the first death this year in South America: three Cuban migrants (two men and a woman) died in a vehicle accident in a motorway near Santa Vitória do Palmar, in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil, on 1 January. They were reportedly on their way to the city of Chuy, at the border with Uruguay.  That brings total fatalities in the Americas through 10 days this year to 10, compared to 12 last year at this same time (see chart below).

Missing Migrants Project data are compiled by IOM staff but come from a variety of sources, some of which are unofficial. To learn more about how data on missing migrants are collected, click here.
Latest Mediterranean Update infographic: http://migration.iom.int/docs/MMP/120118_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 71 860 312 Ext. 109, Mobile +216 28 78 78 05Email: mchabbi@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:17Image: Region-Country: TunisiaThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesMissing MigrantsRefugee and Asylum IssuesDefault: Multimedia:  Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Number of Returns Exceeds Number of Displaced Iraqis: UN Migration Agency

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:21

Erbil – For the first time since the beginning of the Iraq crisis in December 2013, the number of people returning to their area of origin has surpassed the number of people displaced in the country.

Over the past four years, the country has been deeply affected by the conflict with ISIL, which led to the displacement of nearly six million people. Prime Minister Abadi announced Iraq’s victory over ISIL on 9 December 2017; by the end of 2017 IOM, the UN Migration Agency, identified 3.2 million people, who have returned back to their place of origin, while a staggering 2.6 million remained displaced.

Following the improvement of the security situation in retaken areas, a sizable number of internally displaced Iraqis have returned to their location of origin, mainly to the Governorates of Anbar (38 per cent; more than 1.2 million people), Ninewa (30 per cent; nearly 975,000 people), and Salah al-Din (14 per cent; nearly 460,000 people). These three governorates were the worst affected by ISIL’s occupation, and count for 86 per cent of the current displaced population in the country.

Shortly after the operation to retake Mosul was launched in October 2016, IOM Iraq constructed two emergency displacement sites, one in Haj Ali and one in Qayara, with combined capacity of sheltering 110,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs). The sites were constructed in partnership with the Government’s Ministry of Migration and Displacement; both sites are located in the southeast of Ninewa governorate.

The sites are still sheltering more than 71,000 internally displaced persons, who receive relief kits, medical services and psychosocial support from IOM, and a variety of other services from other humanitarian partners.

Intra-Governorate returns of internally displaced persons account for 55 per cent of returnees; this has been a common trend across the most affected Governorates and is likely to continue as the number of displaced people remains high. In fact, the most significant concentration of IDPs is currently in Ninewa (57 per cent) with an intra-governorate internally displaced people population of 97 per cent.

“Iraqis who remain displaced are among the most vulnerable, as they face obstacles to return, including damage or destruction of their home and local infrastructure, financial limitations and other constraints,” said Gerard Waite, IOM Iraq Chief of Mission.

Studies by IOM’s Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) that analyse displacement and return movements of conflict-affected people across Iraq and investigate the factors limiting the displaced people’s willingness to return to their place of origin include the Integrated Location Assessment (December 2017) and Obstacles to Return in Retaken Areas of Iraq (June 2017).

DTM Report Round 86 – 31 December 2017 is available at: http://iraqdtm.iom.int/LastDTMRound/Round86_Report_English_2017_December...

IOM Iraq DTM data about displacement across Iraq can be accessed at: http://iraqdtm.iom.int

For more information, please contact Sandra Black in IOM Iraq, Tel: +964 751 234 2550, Email: sblack@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:16Image: Region-Country: IraqThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesInternally Displaced PersonsDefault: Multimedia: 

Iraqi returnee family in the village of Wana, west of the city of Mosul, carry away relief kit supplied by IOM. Photo: Raber Aziz / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

IOM supports returning families in Mosul by rehabilitating damaged homes with support from Japan. Photo: Raber Aziz / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Iraqi returnee families in the village of Wana, west of Mosul city, who returned to the village after it was retaken from ISIL, take away non-food item (NFI) kits that they received from IOM. Photo: Raber Aziz / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Iraqi returnee families in the village of Wana, west of Mosul city, who returned to the village after it was retaken from ISIL, take away non-food item (NFI) kits that they received from IOM. Photo: Raber Aziz / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Children stand by the gate of the village school in Al Mirbat, south west of Kirkuk, where IOM provided mobile medical teams provided primary health care services and medication to support the returnees. Photo: Raber Aziz / UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2017

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Renovated International Airport Opens in Garowe, Somalia with IOM Support

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:20

Garowe – The newly renovated Garowe International Airport opened its doors on 8 January in the capital of Puntland state, Somalia. The airport had been closed since 2013 and now aims to make Garowe a hub for international travel.

IOM, the UN Migration Agency, supported the renovation efforts led by the Puntland authorities, in full coordination with the federal government and international partners.

“A well established and functioning airport in Garowe is a step in the right direction towards the vision of secure and humane migration within, from, and to Puntland and the greater Somalia,” said Dyane Epstein, IOM Somalia Chief of Mission during the opening ceremony. “With the concerted efforts of all dedicated stakeholders, including those present here today, I believe that we can look forward with optimism,” she added.

The President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo attended the event. Other government representatives present included the President of Puntland State, Vice President of Puntland State, the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation of the Federal Government of Somalia, the Deputy Minister of Aviation and Airports of Puntland State and federal and state directors. Also present were representatives from the EU, World Bank and the UN, as well as government delegations from Ethiopia and Turkey. 

Equipment and furnishings to support the smooth functioning of the airport was donated to the Government through the generous funding of the EU under the Better Migration Management (BMM) Programme, which aims to strengthen immigration and border management capacities. Additionally, IOM’s support for the airport through the BMM programme will increase capacities in data management, reception of passengers and queue management.

“The Ministry of Civil Aviation and Airports commends the dedicated collaboration between the Puntland Government, the Federal Government of Somalia and our international partners including UN members such as the UN Migration Agency for ensuring successful re-operationalization of Garowe Airport,” said Suad Salah Nurm, Deputy Minister of Civil Aviation and airport. 

With the support of IOM, Garowe International Airport will be able to collect passenger information using the Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS), IOM’s border management information system. This information is critical to a well-functional border management, as migration trends can be analysed by immigration authorities to improve services and inform policy. MIDAS is operational in over 19 countries globally, with its largest presence in Somalia.

BMM is funded by the EU Trust Fund for Africa and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and coordinated through the German Corporation for International Cooperation GmbH (GIZ). It aims to improve migration management to reduce the trafficking and smuggling of migrants, within and from the Horn of Africa.  IOM is one of the implementing partners within the programme.

For more information please contact Yuko Tomita, IOM Somalia, Tel: + 254 715 990 600, Email: iomsomaliapsu@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:15Image: Region-Country: SomaliaThemes: Community StabilizationDefault: Multimedia: 

Dyane Epstein, IOM Somalia Chief of Mission during the opening ceremony of the renovated Garowe International Airport in Somalia. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

UN Migration Agency, Japan Help 1,500 Syrian Families Survive Winter

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:20

Amman – This week, IOM, the UN Migration Agency, and its partner NICCOD, a Japanese Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), distributed cash assistance to 1,500 Syrian female headed households or families having at least one member living with disabilities in Zarqa, Jordan.

Two vouchers totalling 70 Jordanian Dinars (JD) are being distributed to every family to purchase food and other essential items. This distribution is in addition to the winterization and regular assistance provided by other NGOs and UN agencies to these refugee families.

“I will buy with the vouchers, olive oil, sugar and rice,” said Aisha, a refugee from Deraa living in Zarqa since 2013. “We are seven at home: two daughters, four sons and me. Only one of them works; and one of them is sick, so this assistance is very useful for us. We face a lot of challenges to pay our bills, and during winter the house is very cold and humid, so we spend more on heating,” said Aisha.

Bringing assistance to vulnerable refugees and their families is an integral part of a one year IOM project funded by the Government of Japan. The Ambassador of Japan to Jordan Hidenao Yanagi, conducted on 10 January a field visit to NICCOD’s Center in Zarqa accompanied by Enrico Ponziani, IOM Jordan’s Chief of Mission. The visit allowed Ambassador Yanagi to monitor the progress of the refugees’ assistance activity, as well as meet families at the distribution point.

“Even though it has been seven years since the onset of the Syrian crisis, vulnerable Syrian refugees in Jordan are still facing very severe situations especially during the harsh winter season when the most vulnerable face greater worries and difficulties in daily survival,” stated Ambassador Yanagi. “Therefore, the Government of Japan provided its support for IOM to deliver this most needed assistance to vulnerable Syrians in Zarqa,” he concluded. 

In 2017, the Government of Japan extended a grant of over USD 600,000 to IOM to provide humanitarian support to Syrian refugees in Jordan.

“The support of the Government of Japan has been fundamental during the last years to bring assistance to the Syrian refugees and to back the efforts of the Government of Jordan in responding to the Syria crisis,” said Ponziani. “We are also glad to collaborate with Japanese NGOs particularly NICCOD in implementing this distribution,” he added.

For more information, please contact Laura Sisniega in IOM Jordan, Tel: +962 79 7048167, Email: lsisniegacrespo@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:14Image: Region-Country: JordanThemes: Humanitarian EmergenciesDefault: Multimedia: 

1,500 Syrian female headed households or families with at least one disabled member received cash assistance in Zarqa, Jordan. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Each family received two vouchers totaling 70 Jordanian Dinars to purchase food and other essential items. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Bringing assistance to vulnerable refugees and their families is an integral part of a one year IOM project funded by the Government of Japan. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Young Libyans Get Three New Football Pitches in Country’s Conflict-Affected South

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:19

Libya – Since the beginning of the crisis in 2011, insecurity has been rampant in southern Libya and, as in many crises, young people and children are among the worst affected. To provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in, IOM, the UN Migration Agency, has built three football pitches in the Sabha and Al Qatroun districts.

The chronically instable situation in southern Libya is compounded by intercommunal conflict, among other major challenges such as shortages of basic services, lack of rule of law and collapsed institutions. Through local meetings, communities in Sabha and Qatroun raised the need to IOM for public spaces where young people can safely practice sports regardless of their ethnic background. They hoped that playing together might also improve relations between different ethnic groups. Recreation spaces also be a great asset for psychosocial support to conflict affected youth, while also helping contribute to combatting radicalization. 

In answer to this request, the development of recreational public spaces began and was closely coordinated with and supported by the community representatives, local authorities and Councils to which IOM handed over the playgrounds. The construction of the pitches by three local construction companies, supported by the European Union and the Government of Germany, was completed at the start of January 2018.

“Communities in our neighbourhood are excited by this new facility, especially the children,” said Omar Mohammed Almelka, CMC member and representative of Alkarama area in Sabha, where one of the pitches was built. “IOM is the first agency to take on a project like this in the area and we hope the support continues with other projects that benefit our communities,” added Almelka.

Football is one of the most popular sports in Libya but most neighbourhoods in Sabha and Qatroun districts lack sports facilities. For example, young people in Tayouri in Sabha, including Tibu (ethnic group), Tuareg (ethnic group), internally displaced persons and migrants, used to be forced to travel long distances on highly insecurity routes through areas still heavily affected by the ongoing conflict to reach the closest sports club. Now, more than 5,000 young people are able to enjoy a game of football safely close to where they live on the three new pitches.

“It is now our duty as the local communities to work together to protect this facility for our future generations; we should take care of it as it belongs to all communities around Sabha and not exclusively to the Tayouri neighbourhood,” said Shoaieb Musa, a civil society activist in Tayouri neighbourhood present during the handover ceremony of the football pitch to community.

Over the course of 2017, IOM organized sport activities and tournaments in recreational centres and schools. Some 1,500 children aged between 10 and 17 years participated in sports tournaments in 2017 and 15 schools were rehabilitated and two recreational centres were built by IOM.

In May 2017, IOM, in cooperation with local stakeholders, also organized a peace festival in southern Libya, in which different tribes, along with internally displaced persons and migrants, celebrated unity and peaceful coexistence. 

Building upon last year’s activities, 2018 will see an increasing focus on youth engagement and social events targeted to them with the aim of bringing together various tribes, families and backgrounds in support of community cohesion and stability in southern Libya.

For more information, please contact IOM Libya:
Christine Petre, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email: chpetre@iom.int
Patrick Charignon, Tel: +216 29 257 585, Email: pcharignon@iom.int

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:13Image: Region-Country: LibyaThemes: Community StabilizationDefault: Multimedia: 

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) builds three football pitches in Sabha and Al Qatroun districts in Libya to provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) builds three football pitches in Sabha and Al Qatroun districts in Libya to provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) builds three football pitches in Sabha and Al Qatroun districts in Libya to provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) builds three football pitches in Sabha and Al Qatroun districts in Libya to provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

The UN Migration Agency (IOM) builds three football pitches in Sabha and Al Qatroun districts in Libya to provide safer and accessible public spaces for young people and children to play in. Photo: UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

IOM, Partners Work to Coordinate Counter Trafficking Efforts in Mongolia

IOM - News - Ven, 01/12/2018 - 08:19

Ulaanbaatar – Senior government officials, representatives of relevant line ministries, civil society partners and international agencies met in Ulaanbaatar on Wednesday (10/1) to discuss the challenges facing implementation of Mongolia’s National Action Plan (NAP) to combat human trafficking.  

Trafficking in persons is a major concern in Mongolia, which the US State Department’s Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report 2017 describes as “a source and destination country for men, women, and children subjected to forced labour and sex trafficking.” It categorizes Mongolia as “a Tier 2 country that does not fully meet the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking, but is making significant efforts to do so.”

The TIP report points to the continued development of the mining industry in the south of the country. That has led to an increase in internal and international migration, increasing the risk of trafficking, particularly along the China-Mongolian border. Increasing their vulnerability to exploitation, truck drivers transporting coal across the border often have their passports confiscated as collateral for their vehicles. Young women are also at risk of being exploited in prostitution by drivers waiting to cross the border.

The annual consultative meeting, which was co-funded by the European Union’s European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR), is part of a project run by the UN Migration Agency, IOM, with local project partners, the Mongolian Gender and Equity Centre (MGEC) and End Child Prostitution and Trafficking (ECPAT).

Vice Minister of Justice and Home Affairs and Head of the Anti-Trafficking Sub-Council Battumur Enkhbayar told delegates: “Strengthened cooperation among stakeholders, including community participation, is key to success in combating human trafficking. Today’s meeting is one of the examples how we closely cooperate with international agencies in protecting victims and preventing this kind of crime. As a result of today’s meeting, we should openly discuss challenges and collectively find solutions.”

The workshop provided recommendations for more efficient NAP implementation. These will be endorsed by the Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs and then shared with government departments, law enforcement agencies, civil society organizations and the general public.

Agencies represented at the meeting included the Ministries of Foreign Affairs; Justice and Home Affairs; Labour and Social Welfare; the Anti-Trafficking Sub-Council; Border Protection Agency; Immigration Agency; National Police Agency; National Intelligence Agency; National Agency for Family, Youth and Child Development; State Prosecution Office; Law Enforcement Academy; State Specialized Inspection Agency; Supreme Court Council; National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia; Child and Family Development Centers from nine districts; Umnugobi and Dornogobi provinces, ECPAT; MGEC; ILO, Asia Foundation and Talita Asia.

For more information on the EIDHR project please go to: http://www.iom.int/sites/default/files/country/docs/mongolia/IOM-Mongoli....

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

 

Language English Posted: Friday, January 12, 2018 - 15:11Image: Region-Country: MongoliaThemes: Capacity BuildingCounter-TraffickingDefault: Multimedia: 

Working session teams at Annual Consultative Meeting on human trafficking in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. Photo: Ankhbayar Erdenebaatar/UN Migration Agency (IOM) 2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM

Up to 100 Migrant Lives Feared Lost off Libya

IOM - News - Mer, 01/10/2018 - 11:44
A Deadly Start to the New Year for Migrants on the Mediterranean 

Tripoli – The Libyan Coast Guard reported Wednesday that up to 100 migrants remain missing in the third deadly shipwreck on the Mediterranean Sea since Saturday. Now, barely a week into the New Year there already are reports of close to 200 migrants or refugees dead or missing on the Central Mediterranean route.

By contrast, IOM recorded just 26 migrant deaths on the Mediterranean Sea lanes during the just-ended month of December 2017, at a time when Mediterranean migrants deaths were dropping sharply. January 2017, for example, had witnessed some 254 deaths. Now, this week’s reports suggest that 2018’s start may be even deadlier.

IOM reported on Tuesday 09 January that a total of 81 Mediterranean Sea deaths of migrants or refugees were recorded in the first eight days of the year. Five of those deaths were in Western Mediterranean waters off Spain and Morocco. The rest – 76 with a possibility of many more – were recorded in the waters between Italy and Libya.

In the latest incident for this year, on Tuesday 9 January, three rubber boats with 279 migrants (19 women, 243 men, 13 boys and four girls) were rescued by the Libyan Coast Guard (Watch video), whose rescue operation lasted at least 12 hours.

Reuters spoke to survivors who say that about 50 people who had boarded the boats now are missing, while Libya’s Coast Guard stated in a press release it believes that number might be as high as 100.

According to survivors’ testimony, around 100 migrants remain missing. IOM, the UN Migration Agency, was present at their disembarkation point in Tripoli and provided food and water to all survivors.

IOM’s Christine Petré reported that the boats departed from near the Libyan coastal towns of Azzawiyah and Al Khums. The majority of the survivors came from African countries including The Gambia, Senegal, Sudan, Mali, and Nigeria. The Libyan Cost Guard reported that eight survivors are from Bangladesh (one woman) while two are from Pakistan.

“It’s very distressing that during the first 10 days of 2018 we have seen close to 800 migrants rescued or intercepted off the Libyan coast with more lives lost at sea,” said Othman Belbeisi, IOM Libya Chief of Mission. “More has to be done to reduce irregular unsafe movements of people along the Central Mediterranean route.”

IOM continues today to provide support and direct humanitarian assistance to the survivors of this latest tragedy, many of whom now are at Libya’s Tajoura detention centre.

Language English Posted: Wednesday, January 10, 2018 - 18:42Image: Region-Country: LibyaDefault: Multimedia: 

Some of the rescued migrants aboard a Libyan Coastguard vessel. Photo: IOM Libya/Eshaebi2018

Press Release Type: Global
Categorie: Press Room IOM