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Foreign secretary: Borders should be migrant friendly

  • Published at 06:14 pm November 26th, 2019
Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque
Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque, centre, and IOM Bangladesh’s Chief of Mission Giorgi Gigauri, right, at a workshop in Dhaka on Tuesday, November 26, 2019 Mahmud Hossain Opu/Dhaka Tribune

We should manage our borders to make them migrant friendly

Foreign Secretary Md Shahidul Haque has said countries around the world need to make their borders migrant friendly.

He said this at a workshop titled "Sensitization Workshop on Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration," jointly organized by the Bangladesh government and Bangladesh United Nations Network on Migration, at the capital's Hotel InterContinental on Tuesday.

"We should manage our borders to make them migrant friendly," he added. 

Commenting on the recent incidents of torture and abuse against migrant women in the labour market of the Middle Eastern countries, he said: "We are going through a critical phase in terms of sending female workers abroad."

Mentioning that Bangladesh is struggling with migration in terms of coordination, governance, and the implementation of Global Compact for Migration (GCM), he said: "Currently there is much tension at global level concerning migration and it continues to remain a top issue in global politics. 

"In order to implement GCM, we need strong coordination among the different stakeholders at all levels for safe, orderly and regular migration."

Speakers at the event urged for a collective effort at the global, regional, national and local stage, including a coherent UN system for safe and efficient migration.

"Sending people abroad is not a solution for overpopulated Bangladesh," said Ahmed Munirus Saleheen, acting secretary of Ministry of Expatriates’ Welfare and Overseas Employment, adding that "We are working towards safe migration."

Echoing the same, Chief of IOM- UN Migration Agency's mission in Bangladesh, Giorgi Gigauri said: "We need to fulfil the objectives and commitments outlined in the GCM, in line with guiding principles, by taking effective steps at all levels to facilitate safe, orderly and regular migration at all stages."

Mia Seppo, UN resident coordinator in Bangladesh, said: "We need the support of the world governments and the society as a whole for the implementation GCM. 

"Moreover, we must ensure human trafficking is addressed and migrants’ rights are ensured through the implementation of this global agreement."

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM) is an intergovernmental negotiated agreement, prepared under the auspices of the UN for the wellbeing of refugees and migrants worldwide signed on 19 December 2018.

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