I o m N E W S r e l e a s e










IOM calls for migrants rights to be respected and for migration to be managed effectively


18 December 2000


No. 8

As the world celebrates International Migrant's Day, IOM calls for greater attention to the human rights of migrants and for migration to be managed effectively in a comprehensive, humane and orderly manner.

According to IOM Director General Brunson McKinley: "Migration will be one of the major policy concerns of the twenty-first century. In our shrinking world, more and more people will look to migration -- temporary or permanent -- as a path to employment, education, freedom or other opportunities. Governments will need to develop sound migration policies and practices. Properly managed, migration can contribute to prosperity, development and mutual understanding among people. IOM will continue to assist governments in managing migration for the good of all."

In addition, he stated, "Today more than ever, the human rights of migrants deserve greater attention. Migrants, whether smuggled or trafficked are routinely exploited, mistreated or even killed. Much more needs to be done to provide assistance to and protection for, victims of trafficking, who often require special counselling, safe accommodation, and medical and social support. As for migrant workers, they often find themselves without protection or recourse, either from their own governments or in the country where they are working. IOM will continue to assist migrants in distress".

Increasingly, Governments are calling on IOM for advice on relevant, sustainable, cost-effective and politically acceptable migration policies and strategies.

At its Council session in November, IOM’s Member States welcomed the recent publication of the first "World Migration Report", and asked the Organization to take a broader and stronger leadership role in the intellectual debate and provision of policy guidance on migration issues, based on its experience in migration management.

IOM plans to respond to this call by setting up a programme of research, analysis and reflection. IOM will work with internal and external experts, and in consultation with governments, other international organizations and civil society to produce guidelines and models for humane and orderly migration management. This work will also lay the structural foundations for the Organization to provide ongoing timely and relevant policy advice to governments on global migration management in the various ongoing migration fora.