Germany, IOM Strengthen Cooperation on Sustainable Reintegration of Returned Iraqi Migrants
Baghdad – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, and the Government of Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) this week agreed to intensify collaboration to support sustainable reintegration of Iraqi migrants in their home communities in Iraq, after returning from Germany and other European countries.
“Our goal is to cooperate with the Government of Iraq as well as other stakeholders, such as IOM, to set up training courses and create jobs for hundreds of thousands of young and unemployed people inside Iraq,” said Gerd Müller, the German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), at a ceremony to sign the agreement with IOM Iraq in Baghdad on Sunday.
In the first quarter of 2018, more than 450 Iraqis voluntarily returned home from Germany with IOM’s support in collaboration with the German Government.
In recent years Germany was a top destination for Iraqi migrants. Nonetheless, during the past three years over 9,000 Iraqis in Germany have decided to return through IOM’s voluntary return programme, which is funded by the German Government.
According to the agreement, IOM Iraq and the Government of Germany will further synchronize resources and services focused on returnees from abroad, returning internally displaced persons (IDPs), and host communities.
“This agreement underlines our shared commitment to support the continued development and reconstruction of a prosperous and stable Iraq,” said Gerard Waite, IOM Iraq Chief of Mission. “This framework acknowledges the vital importance of the successful reintegration of migrants in rebuilding their country,” added Waite.
“Cooperation between governments and international organizations to support voluntary return and job creation for young people and those returning from the diaspora is important,” said Abdulkareem Abdullah, the Government of Iraq’s Undersecretary for Labour Affairs. “Their reintegration into Iraqi society is timely as the security situation has improved. The Ministry will provide full support to reach our shared goals; resolving the current situation in Iraq requires high levels of cooperation.”
One migrant who recently returned home is Muneer, a young Iraqi citizen who stayed in Germany in 2016, before returning to his home in Baghdad to take care of his ailing mother and younger brother.
“About a month ago, IOM informed me of a new project that could support returnees from Germany,” he explained. “I visited their office in Baghdad and after receiving counselling and going through some procedures, I got a job as a taxi driver with someone who has a car and needed a driver.”
Support includes organizational assistance (travel arrangements, assistance with documents, medical care and counselling), financial start-up assistance and in-kind support for housing. The programme has assisted migrants to return and reintegrate in their countries of origin.
For eligibility inquiries regarding assistance for Iraqi returnees from Germany, please contact Tel: +964 751 741 6030.
For more information, please contact Sandra Black in IOM Iraq, Tel: +964 751 234 2550, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org