UN member states express their will to tackle global migration but specific actions are still missing

Summit for Refugees and Migrants, Signing Ceremony of UN-IOM Agreement During the opening of the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants, Secretary-General Ban-Ki Moon seated right) and William Lacy Swing (seated left), Director General of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), sign the agreement to make the IOM a Related Organization of the UN. Date: 19/09/2016. Location: United Nations, New York. Copyright © 2016 United Nations. Photo:Rick Bajornas

Last Monday the world leaders convened at the UN’s summit in New York and adopted the New York Declaration for Migrants and Refugees; a document that contains commitments about dealing with the global issue of the large movements of refugees and migrants around the globe. All 193 countries have agreed to share global responsibility in order to address the migration crisis and save lives while protecting human rights.

This is the first UN summit to target migration but its commitments are not legally binding for the member states, something that creates some doubts about whether it will substantially contribute towards a better management of the refugee flows.

The U.S. President mentioned yesterday during his last speech at the UN General Assembly that there is a need for a “course correction” in order not to allow migration to be the reason for border closures and abandonment of the most vulnerable people.

New York Declaration at a glance

The commitments that were signed between the heads of governments include the protection of human rights and refugees while ensuring that all migrant children will receive education within a short period of their arrival. The prevention of sexual and gender-based violence and the support of countries that host a great number of migrants are among the actions that all parties pledged to implement.

Furthermore, more emphasis will be given to the positive contributions made by migrants to the economic and social development of their host countries. Particularly, Ban Ki-Moon, United Nations Secretary-General, stated on the issue that: “Refugees and migrants are not to be seen as a burden; they offer great potential, if only we unlock it”.

Another main commitment is the condemnation of xenophobia against refugees and migrants and the creation of a global campaign that will be able to face it. However, the link between the migration crisis and terrorism, especially in Europe, could make this goal hard to achieve while extreme right parties are becoming more popular and gaining more and more power in the Old Continent.

Obama cries out for help

The day after the UN Summit, a Leader’s Summit on the Global Refugee Crisis took place where the US president urged all countries to provide additional aid to migrants. More specifically, Barack Obama stated that: “Together, now, we have to open our hearts and do more to help refugees who are desperate for a home”.

The global refugee crisis was characterized by the US president as “the most urgent test of our time”, showing the humanitarian and security challenge that the world is facing. This crisis could be dealt only if collective actions are taken. However, the words of the US President, even if they may have strong influence on many states, sound quite void as his incumbency is soon coming to an end.

EU hopes on NY Declaration and EU-Turkey deal

Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council, expressed his wish that the commitments of the New York Declaration will be the tool to tackle the influx of refugees globally. Donald Tusk also mentioned that the EU’s aim is to restore order on its external border which together with the previewed financial assistance for those in need will reduce the number of refugees coming to the EU.

However, the EU’s objective seems quite promising at the moment when is struggling to stabilise the migration agreement signed with Turkey last March or one of its hotspots in Moria, Lesvos burns to ashes in one single night amidst migrant riots. Moreover, the EU Summit which took place last Friday in Bratislava was not successful on migration. The Italian Prime Minister was not pleased by the fact that nothing was achieved as far as the refugee crisis is concerned and Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, and Czech Republic (Visegrad Group) refused to commit to any mechanism that could force them to receive refugees.

NY Declaration short in specific plans

The Declaration contains plans on how its commitments could be implemented and address the large movements of refugees and migrants. Those consist of a process of negotiations that is going to start this year and lead to the adoption of a Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular migration in 2018 at an intergovernmental conference. What is more, there are some guidelines developed on how migrants in vulnerable situations should be treated, supporting the foundation of the Declaration’s commitments.

All in all, the UN’s Summit that was concluded two days ago together with the signing of the New York Declaration was certainly the commencement of setting the fundamentals to address the fundamental challenges of human mobility in the world. The document though still needs a more thorough planning with possibly legally binding commitments for the parties at stake in order to be able to tackle the root causes of this plaguing humanitarian issue.

the sting Milestones

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

To entrepreneurship and beyond!

WHO and UNICEF in campaign to protect 1.6 million in Sudan from cholera

Rohingya emergency one year on: UN says thousands of lives saved, but challenges remain

Funding boost for sustainable development data agreed at UN conference

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is redefining the economy as we know it

New UN report on families in a changing world puts ‘women’s rights at their core’

Eurozone examines the prospect of issuing debt paper jointly

How multistakeholder platforms can strengthen our multilateral system

State aid: Commission approves €300 million Austrian scheme to support organisers of events affected by coronavirus outbreak

Greening the Belt and Road is essential to our climate’s future

Modern humanitarian aid at times of global crises

Organizations can get reskilling right. This McKinsey survey shows how

EU Parliament raises burning issues over the FTA with the US

A for-profit project has improved nutrition in Rwanda – is it a model that can eliminate hunger across Africa?

The energy industry is changing. Are governments switched on?

Can one FTA and 110 lobby meetings make the dirty oil clean in Europe?

Close to 7,000 evacuated from Syrian towns after enduring nearly 3-year siege

Russia and the West use the same tactics to dismember Ukraine

Eurozone 2013: Where to?

Chart of the day: When do young Europeans leave home?

EU and World Health Organisation team up to boost access to health services in developing countries

Until breath becomes air, there is no limit to care

AXA and Fremtind discuss how AI and analytics is changing insurance claims forever

West Africa ‘shaken by unprecedented violence’, UN envoy tells Security Council

Why ‘floating wind’ is key to the energy transition and how to get it onto the sea quickly

South Sudan’s women caught up in ‘futile man’s war’ UN gender equality chief

Data capture, not disclosure, is the way to meet our climate goals

5 post-COVID trends from Indian entrepreneurs

European Commission registers Χαλλούμι/Halloumi/Hellim as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO)

Rise in Caribbean children displaced by storms shows climate crisis is a child rights issue: UNICEF

Embracing the diversity in a multicultural city of Romania

Mark Zuckerberg will be at the European Parliament today to meet President Tajani and the political group chairpersons

Long live Eurozone’s bank supervisor down with the EU budget supremo

VW diesel scandal and climate change: can increased independent car checks lead to cleaner mobility?

Why is Merkel’s Germany so liberal with the refugees? Did the last elections change that?

Religious violence is on the rise. What can faith-based communities do about it?

JADE Spring Meeting Live Coverage: Entrepreneurial skills in the digital markets

Three of the world’s hardest-hit nations are preparing to end their lockdowns

Colombia: Santos thanks the EU for its support to the peace process

MEPs approve EU’s spending in 2017

EU Top Jobs summit ended with no agreement: welcome to Europe’s quicksand!

FROM THE FIELD: Enslaved Guatemalan indigenous women wait for reparations

Coronavirus: Commission presents practical guidance on implementing the temporary restriction on non-essential travel to the EU

Images from space could bolster the global economy – here’s how

Why are Black people in the UK more at risk from COVID-19?

3 reasons why Singapore is the smartest city in the world

Polish de facto ban on abortion puts women’s lives at risk, says Parliament

IMF’s Lagarde: Estimating Cyber Risk for the Financial Sector

Italy solves the enigma of growth with fiscal consolidation: The Banking Union

G20 LIVE: “United States and Turkey stand in solidarity with France and its people in handing the perpetrators of this crime and bringing them to justice”, US President Barack Obama underlines from G20 in Antalya Turkey

European Health Emergency preparedness and Response Authority (HERA): Getting ready for future health emergencies

The 28 EU leaders unable to start a relevant debate on migration and Brexit

Eight years in, Syria still embroiled in conflict ‘that no longer sparks outrage’, Security Council hears

Working when sick is rising and harms you and your employer. This is why

Council Presidency: Floundering with the EU 2014 budget

Four things the UN chief wants world leaders to know, at key COP24 climate conference opening

Safer roads: More life-saving technology to be mandatory in vehicles

Republic of Senegal and Team Europe agree to build a manufacturing plant to produce vaccines against COVID-19 and other endemic diseases

Nagorno Karabakh conflict: EU allocates additional €10 million to support those affected

Thousands of health professionals call on world leaders to prioritize a greener future, post-pandemic

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s