IOM Joins the UN System

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Date Publish: 
Wednesday, September 21, 2016

At the United Nations Summit on Large Movements of Refugees and Migrants which took place on Monday September 19th, 2016 in New York, IOM Director General William Lacy and UN Secretary General Ban ki-Moon signed a document linking IOM to the UN as one of its related organizations. This event signalled the culmination of a process that began in earnest in June 2016 when IOM Member States unanimously endorsed the process to join the UN. Ambassador Swing emphasized that the process reflects a growing recognition of the importance of migration and the need to better link human mobility with related policy agendas, including in the humanitarian, development, human rights, climate change and peace and security domains.

The General Press Remarks of the Deputy Secretary of IOM can be found here.  

“The signature of this historic agreement brings the leading global migration agency, International Organization for Migration (IOM) – into the United Nations – the culmination of a 65-year relationship. For the very first time in 71 years, the UN now has a ‘UN Migration Agency’,” Ambassador Swing said, adding, “This is a singular honour for our Organization – and a genuine success for migrants and Member States and indeed for this Summit.”

The UN Summit will also set in motion a much longer process focused on migration – a Global Compact on safe, regular and orderly migration that upholds the human rights of migrants and their families, irrespective of migration status. 

The General Remarks of the Secretary General of UN at the Opening Sessions of the High-Level Plenary Meeting  can be found here

IOM’s collaboration with the UN is already close, and will become even more so with the organization as part of the UN system. This will help ensure that the issues surrounding the world’s 244 million international migrants are well addressed. Most importantly, the summit and the process leading to a Global Compact on migration, will be a defining moment for human mobility.

During the Summit the New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants was adopted. You can find out more information on the New York Declaration, as well as, the full text here.  

Watch the signing ceremony here