December 19, 2018

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    LANKA SAYS GLOBAL COMPACT FOR MIGRATION IS NOT THE END, BUT BEGINNING

    December 02, 2018

    “The Global Compact for Migration (GCM)” due to be endorsed at a high level international conference in Marrakesh in December this year, Ambassador A.L.A. Azeez, Sri Lanka Permanent Representative in Geneva said “is not the end –but the beginning of the real work”. He made this remark, addressing the General Debate of the ongoing 109th Session of the IOM Council in Geneva. He urged all countries, ‘especially those which have for decades valued and sustained migration as a source of national economic advancement,’ to unreservedly endorse the GCM’, as ‘it has now left us with an integrated framework for action.’

    Assuring that Sri Lanka, in its national capacity, and both as the Chair of the Abu Dhabi Dialogue (ADD) and the founder member of the Colombo Process (CP) – would endeavour in the best possible way to take the GCM processes forward, he emphasized the importance of the implementation of the Global Compact by all stakeholders. He further said that Sri Lanka looked forward to contributing actively to the discussion on the modalities for follow-up and review of progress in the Global Compact early next year. The GCM, Ambassador Azeez noted, was rooted in achieving SDG’s, adding that it was important to look at how effectively implementation of commitments could take place taking into account the respective regional dynamics and priorities.

    Appreciating Sri Lanka’s comments and commending its active leadership to the Abu Dhabi Dialogue and useful contributions to the Colombo Process, the two Regional Consultative Processes (RCPs) that oversaw an annual flow of over 2.5 million labour migrants, Director-General of IOM, Mr. Antonio Vitorino stated that addressing the different priorities and dynamics of RCPs like CP and ADD was extremely relevant to understanding how they could be anchored in the pursuit of the Global Compact commitments. DG Vitorino assured that IOM would be ready to support all RCP endeavours.

    Ambassador Azeez also drew the attention of the IOM Council to the policy measures and programmes derived already in place in Sri Lanka, such as the National Human Rights Action Plan with a dedicated focus on Migrants Rights, the Migrant Health Policy, measures to prevent human trafficking including prevention, protection, prosecution and partnership strategy. He noted with appreciation the excellent cooperation Sri Lanka continued to enjoy with IOM both at Headquarters level and through the IOM County Office in Colombo.

    The Sri Lanka delegation included Deputy Permanent Representative Samantha Jayasuriya and Minister Counsellor Shashika Somaratne.

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