IOM Helps Voluntary Returnees from Europe to Iraq’s Kurdistan Region Find Jobs


France - An IOM pilot employment project has placed its first five voluntary returnees from Europe in private sector jobs in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

The 18-month MAGNET project, which was launched in January, is designed to help to reintegrate failed asylum seekers from Austria, Belgium, France and the Netherlands when they voluntarily return home to Erbil, Sulaymaniyah and Dahuk governorates.

It provides them with information on the local labor market before they return from Europe; offers individual post-arrival counseling to review their qualifications against possible openings; and provides an online database that matches their skills with vacancies offered by local employers.

The five successful returnees have found jobs in secretarial work (2), as machine operators in a plastic products factory (2), and as sales assistant in a shop.

The MAGNET database has now recorded 49 applications and 109 job vacancies. It has made 108 referrals of beneficiaries to employers.

The project will also organize a round of workshops bringing together IOM experts and key actors of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq government and private sector to discuss job placement strategies and job fairs for potential employers and project beneficiaries.

“These encouraging early results indicate that MAGNET with its job-centered reintegration approach is potentially a win-win approach, helping voluntary returnees for whom business start-up are not always an option and filling vacancies in this vibrant local economy,” says project coordinator Nazanine Nozarian. 

MAGNET is funded by the European Union, the French Ministry of Interior and the Dutch Repatriation and Departure Service, and supported by the Austrian Federal Ministry of the Interior and the Kurdistan Regional Government.

For more information on MAGNET, please visit

For more information, please contact

Nazanine Nozarian
IOM Paris
Tel: +33140440684

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