Saturday, January 28, 2017 6:27 pm
The UN has cautioned the U.S. government on the “Refugee Order’’ signed on Friday by President Donald Trump temporarily banning refugees into the country from seven countries.
The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) in a joint statement said the contributions of refugees to their countries of refuge had been positive.
“The needs of refugees and migrants worldwide have never been greater, and the U.S. resettlement programme is one of the most important in the world.
“The longstanding U.S. policy of welcoming refugees has created a win-win situation: it has saved the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in the world who have in turn enriched and strengthened their new societies.
“The contribution of refugees and migrants to their new homes worldwide has been overwhelmingly positive,’’ the UN agencies stated.
According to the statement, resettlement places provided by every country are vital.
The UN agencies pledged to engage with the U.S. government to ensure the protection of refugees and migrants in the country.
“UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and IOM, the International Organisation for Migration, hope that the U.S. will continue its strong leadership role and long tradition of protecting those who are fleeing conflict and persecution.
“UNHCR and IOM remain committed to working with the U.S. Administration towards the goal we share to ensure safe and secure resettlement and immigration programmes,’’ the statement said.
The statement said the UN agencies also urged equal treatment for refugees and migrants without discrimination.
“We strongly believe that refugees should receive equal treatment for protection and assistance, and opportunities for resettlement, regardless of their religion, nationality or race.
“We will continue to engage actively and constructively with the U.S. government as we have done for decades to protect those who need it most, and to offer our support on asylum and migration matters,’’ it stated.