Switzerland - IOM and the International Commission on Missing Persons (ICMP) have concluded an agreement on cooperation in matters of common interest. A formal agreement was signed today in Geneva, Switzerland, by IOM Director General William Lacy Swing and ICMP Director General Kathryne Bomberger.
According to the agreement, the main areas of cooperation between the two international organizations will be to address the issue of missing persons from migration, displacement, human trafficking, and other causes. IOM and ICMP will also cooperate in conducting research studies on matters of mutual interest and other areas.
While ICMP estimates that millions of persons are missing as a consequence of armed conflict and violations of human rights, there are no precise numbers regarding how many persons are missing from migration, displacement and organized violence, including human trafficking and drug related violence.
According to the United Nations there are an estimated 214 million international migrants today and the World Bank believes that this number could nearly double to 405 million by 2050.
“This agreement will benefit both IOM and ICMP, building on synergies between our two organizations. IOM’s global reach and expertise in human mobility, particularly in post-crisis situations resulting in displacement, and in the fields of irregular migration, human trafficking and migration management, clearly complement ICMP’s recognized expertise in the tracing and identification of missing persons,” said IOM Director General William Lacy Swing.
“The issue of persons missing due to migration, displacement or human trafficking knows no international, regional or other boundaries. In addition, there are currently no viable mechanisms in place to locate persons missing for involuntary reasons on an international level. Through our cooperation with IOM, we would seek to understand the global nature and scale of the missing persons problem and to find the means to locate and identify missing persons in coordination with relevant international and domestic institutions. We look forward to jointly tackling this issue with IOM,” said ICMP Director General Kathryne Bomberger.
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