IOM Begins Resettlement to Europe Under 1-to-1 EU-Turkey Deal

Posted: 
04/05/16
Themes: 
Resettlement

Turkey -  Since 4 April, IOM Turkey has facilitated the departure of 74 Syrians for resettlement to Europe as part of the 18 March 2016 agreement between EU Heads of State and the Government of Turkey.

As the first three boats carrying migrants departed Greece for Turkey under the deal, IOM’s office in Turkey arranged the logistics for the resettlement of the refugees from Turkey to Europe.

On 4 April, IOM Turkey organized the departure of 32 Syrians to Germany and 11 Syrians to Finland.   On 5 April, another 31 Syrians departed Turkey for resettlement in the Netherlands. IOM’s offices in Turkey are in ongoing discussions with other EU Member States for timely resettlement of Syrian refugees from Turkey. 

For these resettlements, the process begins when the refugee is referred to the resettlement country who then contacts IOM for support with the resettlement selection mission.  IOM Turkey supports these selection missions by providing logistical support, accommodation for the refugees being interviewed by the resettlement country and transportation for the refugees to and from their location to the interview location.

Once the resettlement is mutually agreed by the resettlement country and the refugee, IOM Turkey performs pre-departure health checks to ensure each refugee is fit to travel. After this check, IOM Turkey arranges all domestic and international transportation from the point of departure in Turkey to the final destination in the resettlement country. 

In some cases, IOM Turkey also provides pre-departure cultural orientation and pre-embarkation sessions on the travel process if requested by the resettlement country. This was not the case with the Syrians moved yesterday and today.

According to the European Commission, the Syrian resettlement is being carried out in first instance by honoring commitments made by EU Member States under the 22 July 2015 Joint EU resettlement scheme. Some 18,000 resettlement places remain from this commitment. 

“The resettlement of refugees provides a safe and legal alternative to the dangerous irregular sea crossings.  Although this is a first step in the right direction, more must be done and more places must be offered for refugees, not only under resettlement programmes, but also through family reunification, humanitarian admission, and humanitarian and student visas to name but a few,” said Lado Gvilava, IOM Turkey Chief of Mission.

Since the conflict in Syria began, IOM Turkey has assisted nearly 9,500 Syrians to resettle to a third country from Turkey.   

IOM Turkey Resettlement Departures – All Nationalities

Year Number of refugees  resettled by IOM Turkey
2010 5135
2011 4080
2012 6015
2013 7688
2014 10,390
2015 10,513

For further information, please contact Abby Dwommoh at IOM Turkey, Tel: +90 312 455 1202, Email: MediaIOMTurkey@iom.int

A Syrian migrant leaves Turkey for western Europe. Photo: IOM