Following the US and Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic have also expressed their intention not to sign the UN Pact on Migration next December. Approved in July 2018 by all 193 UN members except the US, the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is an intergovernmental agreement establishing a common understanding of all aspects of international migration and a framework for comprehensive international cooperation. While non-binding, the Compact includes actionable commitments to help countries address international migration collectively on a human-rights based approach.
The Global Compact on Migration is important to better understand the root causes of migration and the benefits migrants bring to host countries. At a time when xenophobia is rising, migrants are dying on their journey and host countries are left alone to deal with the migrants’ arrival, the Pact shows states are starting to think about migration in a comprehensive manner and not only from the point of view of border controls.
The decision of the US, Hungary, Austria and the Czech Republic goes the opposite way. It displays a lack of solidarity and a constant fear and misunderstanding of the migration phenomenon. As international migration is a global phenomenon, SOLIDAR believes it can indeed only be tackled taking a global and human-rights based approach. EU members especially are expected to remain true to the EU’s founding values of solidarity and respect for fundamental freedoms and sign the Global Compact on Migration.
Also this week, while 10,000 migrants, including families, women, the elderly and children, are marching for hours and hours to reach the USA, the World Social Forum on migration issued a statement, signed by SOLIDAR, reiterating the call to states to comply with their obligations to fully respect human rights and provide immediate humanitarian assistance.