Minahil and Natasha from Zimbabwe and Pakistan shared their experiences and called for action. Minahil and Natsha arrived in Ireland some years ago and are passionate advocates for refugee children around the world. Listen to the interview.
They also spoke at the Vigil on Sunday evening.
Good Friends and ardent child activists were present. Captured in the crowd was Leymah Gbowee who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for her work in leading a women’s peace movement that brought an end to the Second Liberian Civil War in 2003. She addressed the people gathered towards the end of the vigil.
The ‘New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants’ was adopted this morning at the opening of the United Nations General Assembly 71st Session High-Level Meeting on Refugees and Migrants / High-level plenary meeting to address large movements of refugees and migrants. Access to text in 6 languages A ceremony to mark the formalizing of an already old relationship (65 years) between United Nations and the IOM (International Organization for Migrants) also took place. All is on webcast HERE The list of speakers at the opening session:
My pick H.E. Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, High Commissioner for Human Rights and Ms Nadia Taha, Yazda – Iraq.
Eni Lestari Andayani Adi. (Indonesia) Chairperson, International Migrant’s Alliance (IMA) addressing the Summit. The text of ALL statements are HERE
Civil society has made a response to the NY Declaration for Refugees and Migrants urging world leaders to take 7 actions to make a new deal for refugees, migrants and societies a reality. This document is in English, Spanish, French and I have endorsed it on behalf of us all. ‘The real and immediate test is whether the Summit will be able to make a difference on the ground for the millions of refugees, migrants and internally displaced people (IDP’s) in need of protection, safe passage, solidarity, inclusion, decent work and livelihoods, and for the societies that host them.’ The 7 actions are presented as actions that can made that difference.
To our Position Paper on Migration we must now add this new declaration on Refugees and Migrants and analyze the 7 action proposed by civil society as to how each one of us and our governments can make a change.
- Translate the New York Declaration at national and local level
- Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework with UNHCR and develop a Global Compact for Refugees no later than 2018
- Review national border policies to uphold the human rights of all people at international borders and implement gender-and age- sensitive guidelines to protect migrants in vulnerable situation
- End the practice of child immigration detention in accordance with the best interests of the child
- Commit to the development of Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration with civil society including migrants and refugees directly involved in the process from now until the Compact is achieved.
- Implement policies and vigorous campaigns at national and local levels to counter xenophobia, discrimination and racism
- Agree on concrete measures to improve the protection and assistance for internally displaced people
“Refugees and Migrants may lose many things when they move but never their human rights and fundamental dignity ”
Read more here and see the SCORECARD evaluating the ‘New York Declaration for Refugees and Migrants’ from civil society perspective.