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28 September 2016

An Egyptian migrant sleeps in a hospital after being rescued from a boat illegally carrying 600 migrants that sank in the Mediterranean on 22 September. After the rescue, police handcuffed migrants in the hospital. Photo: Eman Helal / AP

How the United Nations' New Agreement on the Global Migrant and Refugee Crisis Might Work

United Nations - From the Middle East to the heart of Europe, countries are struggling to deal with a massive surge of desperate people crossing their borders, some fleeing for their lives, others escaping poverty and in search of jobs, writes Pamela Falk for Newsweek.

The number of people forced to flee their homes is staggering. According to UNHCR, there are 65.3 million people forcibly displaced, including 21.3 million registered refugees who have fled their home countries to escape conflict or persecution.

“In addition to the refugees, there are 244 million international migrants—probably an underestimate—and if you add to them the 750 million domestic migrants, you have 1 billion people; that is 1 billion in our 7 billion world,” says William Lacy Swing, Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM). “One out of every seven people on the planet is in a migratory status.”

The U.N. and the United States convened two international summits in September to deal with what Swing calls the “mega-trend in the 21st century…more people on the move than at any other time in recorded history.”

Read on

Between 7,000-9,000 migrants are still living in the camp outside the French channel port of Calais. Photo: SBS.

Calais Migrant Camp Demolition Raises Child Trafficking Fears, U.N. Says

United Kingdom - Lone children living in the shanty town near Calais are likely to go missing or risk being trafficked when France dismantles the migrant camp, UNICEF, the UN children’s agency, said on Monday, writes Lin Taylor for Reuters. It urged authorities to speed up the reunion of children with families in Britain.

UNICEF said it was concerned for the safety and future of unaccompanied minors living in the so-called "jungle" camp, on the outskirts of the northern French port town, which still hosts between 7,000-9,000 migrants.

"Before the bulldozers arrive, there must be robust plans to safeguard the hundreds of unaccompanied children currently stranded in the camp," said Lily Caprani, UNICEF UK's Deputy Executive Director.

Clashes with police broke out in February when authorities began evicting refugees from the southern part of the camp.

Read on

Migration in the News
  • Voice of America reported that with the abrupt collapse of a cease-fire in Syria last week, international agencies  expect no letup in the wave of migration from the Middle East, which has set off the worst migration crisis in 70 years.

  • Reuters, Voice of America and International Business Times reported that the death toll from a migrant shipwreck off the coast of Egypt last week has reached 202.

  • Voice of America reported that the number of refugees and migrants arriving in Europe has fallen sharply this year, but the death toll has risen.

  • Qatar News Agency reported that Qatar Red Crescent Society and IOM signed an agreement to strengthen cooperation for providing emergency health care to crisis-affected people in Iraq.

  • UNDP reported that it will collaborate more closely with IOM on migration and development, after signing a statement of intent for strengthened cooperation.

  • DPA reported that according to human rights groups, Italy has started a policy of mass repatriations to Sudan based on a secret police cooperation deal in breach of international law.

  • Irrawaddy reported that Burma’s parliament discussed a proposal urging the government to enact legislation to protect Burmese migrant workers from exploitation and abuse abroad.

Trending on the Internet

  • Express UK reported that Swedish churches have admitted to helping migrants who have gone into hiding from the authorities after having their asylum applications denied.

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