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IDPs contribution will be needed after pandemic-Vatican

Pope defends migrants

Pope Francis gestures as he arrives to deliver the “Urbi et Orbi” Christmas Day message from the main balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican, December 25, 2019.

 

Cardinal Michael Czerny says the contribution of internally displaced persons (IDPs) will be needed in the post-Covid-19 world that is emerging.
Czerny made the remark at a press conference introducing the new “Pastoral Orientations on Internally Displaced Persons.
“From the beginning of his pontificate, Pope Francis has been encouraging and urging and showing the Church to accompany all people who in one way or another are forced to flee”, according to Cardinal Michael Czerny, S.J., an Under-Secretary of the Migrants and Refugees Section (M&R) at the Vatican.
The Cardinal was speaking at a press conference in the Sala Marconi of Palazzo Pio on Tuesday, where he presented new “Pastoral Orientations on Internally Displaced Persons”,  published Tuesday on the M&R website. On hand for the press conference were Father Fabio Baggio, C.S., Under-Secretary of the same Vatican Section for Migrants and Refugees and Amaya Valcárcel, the Coordinator for International Advocacy for Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS) in Rome.
Pope Francis’s commitment to serving “vulnerable persons on the move” led to the establishment of the Migrants & Refugees Section, which began its activity in 2017.
The work of the Migrants and Refugees Section
Since that time, Cardinal Czerny said, M&R has produced numerous resources aimed at assisting those who serve men, women, and children who are forced to leave their homes.
These resources include a list of Pastoral Action Points for use by organizations caring for migrants and refugees in 2017 and, a year later, Pastoral Orientations on Human Trafficking.
In 2019, M&R again held consultations “with church leaders and partner organizations with practitioners and Scholars working in the field” of internal displacement, Cardinal Czerny said, leading to the Pastoral Orientations on Internally Displaced Persons presented on Tuesday.
He emphasized that the document on IDPs is part of “a series of responses” given by M&R. With each intervention, the Section addresses one particular segment of “the overall population of vulnerable people on the move, and focus on their situation, their needs, how the Church is actually responding, and how we could respond better”.
Nourished by Church teaching and action
The roots of the new guidelines can be found in the teaching office and the pastoral action of the Church, said Father Fabio Baggio, C.S., who is also an under-secretary in M&R:
“The Pastoral Guidelines on Internally Displaced Persons are nourished by the richness of the universal and local Magisterium and by the long pastoral tradition of the actions that the Church, in different parts of the world, has undertaken for the benefit of these inhabitants of the existential peripheries”.
Assisting IDPs during the pandemic
Cardinal Czerny noted that the new guidelines, like previous productions, have been “approved by the Holy Father”. He said they are meant “to guide the Church’s ministry to IDPs in planning and practical engagement, in advocacy and dialogue”.
The Cardinal also noted the special significance of the Pastoral Orientations during the coronavirus emergency: “In this time of pandemic, the virus does not seem distinguish between those who are important and those who are invisible, those who are settled and those who are displaced: everyone is vulnerable, and each infection is a danger to everyone”.
In these circumstance, he continued, it is important for IDPs to be “recognized and supported, promoted and eventually re-integrated, so that they can once again play an active, constructive role in their country, even if powerful causes – both natural and unjust human causes – have forced them to flee from home and take refuge somewhere else”.
“In the post-Covid-19 world that is emerging,” he added, “their contribution will be very much needed”.

READ  IOM Supports “Strategic Diaspora Mobilization” During COVID-19 Outbreak in Mauritania

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IOM launches open South America portal

International Organisation of Migration (

Buenos Aires – IOM, the International Organization for Migration, this week launched the Open South America Portal, a web platform providing migrants and stakeholders in the region with access to reliable and timely information on human mobility restrictions and health and safety measures adopted by governments in the COVID-19 pandemic.

Open South America, available in SpanishEnglish and Portuguese, shares official information by country on the latest measures, including border restrictions, quarantine requirements and COVID-19 tests for migrants and travellers.

The portal also provides updated information on authorized entry points and key places for travellers and migrants, such as consulates, migrant care and health centres, airports, border crossings points and ports. This information can be explored through an interactive map.

The platform, funded by the IOM Development Fund, is also accessible to vulnerable migrants who may be stranded or are at risk of receiving misinformation on migration.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, South America has been one of the most impacted regions worldwide. According to the World Health Organization figures, as of 8 July 2021 there were 33,475,765 COVID-19 cumulative cases in the region, which represents 89 per cent of the total cases in Latin America, and 18 per cent of all infections recorded globally.

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Countries such as Brazil, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador all experienced severe outbreaks. For example, Brazil currently reports the third highest number of cumulative cases (18,855,015) and second highest death toll (526,892) globally.

“Open South America will facilitate orderly, regular and responsible migration in South America amid the uncertain times of COVID-19 and after the pandemic,” said Minister Ana Laura Cachaza, General Director of Consular Affairs of the Government of Argentina.

“Migrants’ access to up-to-date information through innovative online tools is essential considering the changing migration dynamic in the region due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Marcelo Pisani, IOM Regional Director for South America.

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29,000 Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians, other Africans migrated through the Mediterranean Sea to Europe in 2021 —IOM

The International Organisation for Migration has said that 29,000 individuals including Nigerians, Ghanaians, Somalians and other Africans have emigrated to Europe through the Mediterranean Sea this year.

About 13,000 were arrested by the coast guards and returned home while 761 migrants were said to have perished in the sea.

Disclosing this to journalists in Abuja on Friday, the Chief of Mission, IOM Nigeria, Mr Franz Celestin, said less than five per cent of migrants usually made it to Europe, adding that the vast majority stay in Africa.

He further said that a lot of migrants were trafficked within the Economic Community of West African States, adding that Mali was the number one destination point for trafficked Nigerian women.

Responding to questions on the number of people who have undertaken the perilous trip to Europe through the Mediterranean, the IOM Chief said, “A combination of unemployment and underemployment is pushing people to migrate.

READ  Conflicts, disasters displace 12 million children in 2019- UNICEF

“In this year, 29,000 migrants from Sub-Sahara Africa have migrated to Europe through the Mediterranean. About 13,000 were intercepted by the coastguard while 761 died.”

International Organisation of Migration (

Celestin stressed the importance of tackling human trafficking which he said grossed about $150 billion annually.

“Traffickers make a lot of money and they would continue to do it until a coordinated response is evolved to stop them. We are collaborating with Interpol in this respect; we are connected to the Interpol i/247 database. We connected the MIDAS to the Interpol database where we pass the information on traffickers to the Interpol,” he stated.

Celestin explained that the IOM has been involved in the biometric registration of children in the North-East, noting that the agency has registered no fewer than 17,053 children in 18 different internally displaced person camps between 2019 and May 2021 in Borno State.

The agency chief also disclosed that IOM was involved in the G7 Famine Prevention and Humanitarian Compact for North-East.

READ  IOM commends United States’ inclusion of migrants in COVID-19 vaccine roll-out

 

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FG condemns killing of Nigerian footballer in UK

Kelvin

The Federal government has condemned the alleged killing of a Nigerian Footballer, Kelvin Igweani, by the UK police.

Recall that Igweani, a Nigerian Footballer, was shot dead by officers, who attended a call out to a house, where a child was found with serious injuries.

Reacting, Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM), in Abuja on Wednesday described the incident as very unfortunate,and sad.

Dabiri-Erewa condoled with the family of the deceased and the Nigerian communities in the UK while praying that God grants rest to the soul of the departed.

“We call on the UK government for a thorough and proper investigation to be carried out on the incident,” the statement added.

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READ  IOM provides food vouchers to vulnerable refugees and migrants affected by COVID-19 in Brazil
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