United Nations officials today highlighted the plight of international migrants, stressing that countries should increase efforts to protect their rights while finding ways to integrate their contributions to society into the post-2015 development agenda.
“Evidence clearly shows that migration contributes significantly to development,” the Deputy Secretary-General, Jan Eliasson, told reporters at a press conference on the eve of the 3-4 October General Assembly’s High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development.
“Migrant and diaspora communities can bring about innovation, trade and investment. Migrants contribute to economic development as entrepreneurs by creating business start-ups and employment,” he said.
According to UN figures, migration continues to increase in size and scope. In 2000, there were 175 million international migrants compared to some 232 million in 2013. Half of them are women. The impact of remittance flows is also significant having reached $401 billion last year – nearly four times the $126 billion in official development assistance (ODA)
António Guterres the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees today expressed shock at the capsizing of a boat off the coast of the Italian island of Lampedusa which has reportedly led to the death of some 82 African migrants.
In his remarks to to High-Level Dialogue Ban Ki-moon, the UN Secretary-General Secretary-General said that one did not need to go further than to look no further than this morning’s headlines on the tragedy off Lampedusa to see the great importance of this dialogue. “First, we must do more to protect the human rights of all migrants,” Mr. Ban said. “We cannot remain silent. We need to eliminate all forms of discrimination against migrants, including those related to working conditions and wages. “
The International Organization on Migration (IOM) urges leaders to overcome differences and agree on concrete measures for global action on migration.
“We cannot afford to miss this opportunity,” says IOM’s Director General, Ambassador William Lacy Swing. “We have a chance to make a difference for millions of migrants and their families.”
IOM has put forward a series of recommendations for action on international migration to improve outcomes for migrants, countries of origin and countries of destination. Under the slogan “It’s Amazing What Migrants Bring,” IOM is presenting an information campaign at the HLD on the overwhelmingly positive contributions of migrants.
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