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15 October 2018

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Daro (l), a returning migrant from Mauritania is interviewed by Khoudia and Ndeye (standing) in Dakar, Senegal. Photo: IOM

Senegal’s Migrant Returnees Become Storytellers, Thanks to IOM’s Migrants as Messengers Campaign

Dakar (IPS) – Khoudia Ndiaye and Ndeye Fatou Sall set up a smartphone on a tripod to begin recording a video interview with Daro Thiam in Hann Bel-Air, a neighbourhood in Senegal’s capital Dakar. Hann Bel-Air is the departure point for many of the migrants who leave the city and country on irregular routes – boats to Spain, crossing the Sahara desert to the Mediterranean Sea, or to countries nearby.

Thiam, a mother of four, has recently returned from Mauritania, where she was unable to find a job to support her children.

The three Senegalese women on a sunny rooftop near the beach have something in common: they are all migrants. Each of them left their home country to better their lives and support their families. But this afternoon is about Thiam’s story.

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Border crossing between Benin and Togo. Photo: YoTuT on Flickr ©2011

Free Movement of Persons in Africa: What are the Benefits and Challenges?

(IOM) – In his opening speech at the 30th African Union (AU) Ordinary Session in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the AU Commission Chairperson, Moussa Faki Mahamat, urged member states to adopt the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons, stressing the significance of ensuring ‘‘that Africans are no longer treated like foreigners on their own continent, while others move about therein often freely.’’

Similar sentiments were being expressed across Africa, when the continent widely welcomed the adoption of the Protocol on Free Movement at the AU Summit in January 2018. First conceived more than 25 years ago in the 1991 Abuja Treaty, the Protocol continues to be hailed as a significant step forward in Africa’s integration efforts.

The potential benefits of increased movement within Africa cannot be overstated. In addition to enhancing Africans’ rights to entry, residence and establishment in AU member states, many see the Protocol —once it is widely adopted and implemented — as a catalyst for the continent’s socio-economic development and as a chance for African countries to finally respond to the complexities of migration as a collective.

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Nicole: "I know that if I wanted to go back home I always have that option — I feel very lucky to have that choice."

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  • InfoMigrants and EU Reporter reported that the European Commission has awarded EUR 24.1 million to IOM to provide support, help and education for migrant children in Greece.
  • VOA reported that some Rohingya refugee women in Cox's Bazar have formed a first-of-a-kind committee to present their concerns and needs to UN camp managers directly. 
  • ANSA reported that IOM has provided housing to over 2,000 vulnerable migrants and refugees transferred from the Aegean islands to mainland Greece.
  • CGTN followed a group of migrants making their way through the Balkans, headed for Western Europe.
  • IPS and Reliefweb reported that IOM has released the Global Migration Indicators Report 2018 which summarizes key global migration trends based on the latest statistics, showcasing 21 indicators across 17 migration topics.
  • ANSA reported on the launch of CinemArena, an Italian Foreign Ministry campaign which uses film to raise awareness about the risks of irregular migration. The campaign is being rolled out across small villages in Africa.

  • CNN, BBC, The New York Times, AFP, Anadolu, Reuters and AP reported that 22 people, including children, died on Sunday when a vehicle carrying migrants reportedly heading for Greece plunged off the highway into a waterway in western Turkey.
  • The New York TimesBBCVOA and Reuters reported that 11 people, thought to be migrants, were killed when a suspected smuggler’s car crashed in northern Greece on Saturday.
  • BBCEuronewsReutersAFPGreek Reporter and DW reported that the Italian Interior Ministry has ordered migrants in Riace to be redistributed across Italy ending what was hailed across the globe as a model for reviving towns and integrating refugees.
  • AP reported that over 1,400 migrants have been abandoned by smugglers in Arizona's harsh Sonoran desert in recent weeks.
  • DW reported on Castel Volturno, which once embodied the dream of a brighter future for this neglected region of southern Italy. Today the town struggles with irregular immigration, lack of adequate public intervention and urban deprivation.
  • Perth Now reported on how migrants are adding value and jobs to the economy of Western Australia.