US withdraws from UN migration pact

The U.S. has withdrawn from the unbinding U.N. compact on migration. According to The Guardian,” The announcement of the US withdrawal from the pact came hours before the opening of a UN global conference on migration scheduled to begin on Monday in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. In 2016, the 193 members of the UN general assembly unanimously adopted a non-binding political declaration. The initiative had the enthusiastic backing of Barack Obama, and was embraced by U.N Secretary General Antonio Guterres as one of his major challenges for 2018.

The compact said, “We are witnessing in today’s world an unprecedented level of human mobility. More people than ever before live in a country other than the one in which they were born. Migrants are present in all countries in the world. Most of them move without incident. In 2015, their number surpassed 244 million, growing at a rate faster than the world’s population. However, there are roughly 65 million forcibly displaced persons, including over 21 million refugees, 3 million asylum seekers and over 40 million internally displaced persons.

“No one State can manage such movements on its own….We acknowledge a shared responsibility to manage large movements of refugees and migrants in a humane, sensitive, compassionate and people –centred manner….Large movements of refugees and migrants must have comprehensive policy support, assistance and protection, consistent with States’ obligations under international law.”

The signatures committed themselves to:

protect the safety, dignity and human rights and fundamental freedoms of all migrants, regardless of their migratory status, and at all times;

support countries rescuing, receiving and hosting large numbers of refugees and migrants;

integrate migrants – addressing their needs and capacities as well as those of receiving communities – in humanitarian and development assistance frameworks and planning;

combat xenophobia, racism and discrimination towards all migrants;

develop, through a state-led process, non-binding principles and voluntary guidelines on the treatment of migrants in vulnerable situations; and strengthen global governance of migration, including by bringing IOM into the UN family and through the development of a global compact for safe, orderly and regular migration

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