Co-Facilitators Revise Draft Modalities for HLM on Refugees and Migrants
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The co-facilitators for the UN General Assembly (UNGA) high-level meeting (HLM) to address large movements of refugees and migrants issued revised text for a draft resolution on modalities for the meeting, reflecting changes on themes and stakeholder engagement.

The draft was revised following consultations on the 13 April version.

Consultations on the updated text will take place on 5 May, according to the co-facilitators' letter to Member States.

UNGA 2nd Committee - Economic and Financial29 April 2016: The co-facilitators for the UN General Assembly (UNGA) high-level meeting (HLM) to address large movements of refugees and migrants issued revised text for a draft resolution on modalities for the meeting, reflecting changes on themes and stakeholder engagement. The draft was revised following consultations on the 13 April version. Consultations on the updated text will take place on 5 May, according to the co-facilitators’ letter to Member States.

Dina Kawar, Permanent Representative of Jordan, and David Donoghue, Permanent Representative of Ireland, circulated the revised text on 29 April, noting that they have proposed a shorter list of speakers than initially planned for the opening session, in view of that session’s time constraints. The revised text specifies that a member of the migrant community and a member of the refugee committee will be among the speakers making opening statements, rather than “two members of the migrant and refugee communities.” The text deletes an earlier reference on including “an eminent personality engaged in migrant and refugee issues.”

On the preparation of the HLM’s outcome document, the 13 April text said the co-facilitators will prepare “successive drafts,” on the basis of Member States’ views, while the 29 April version provides for them to prepare an “initial draft.” On stakeholder engagement, rather than having the co-facilitators “facilitate” the engagement, the current draft notes that stakeholders “will be able to contribute views” and that “the intergovernmental nature of the negotiations, however, will be fully respected.”

On the six roundtable themes, two of the proposed themes remain the same as in the earlier draft: “addressing the root causes of large movements of refugees;” and “international action and cooperation on refugees and migrants – the way ahead.” The other four themes reflect some changes: “assessing the root causes of migration and the contribution of migrants” has become “assessing drivers of large movements of migrants and the positive contribution of migrants;” “protection issues related to refugees” has become “addressing vulnerabilities in transit for refugees and migrants;” and “responsibility-sharing for refugees” has become “responsibility-sharing for refugees and respect for international law.” The theme of “Global compact for safe, regular and orderly migration: towards realizing the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and realizing the human rights of migrants” has changed to eliminate text on “realizing the human rights of migrants.”

The draft resolution maintains the mention that substantive negotiations ahead of the HLM to give due consideration to the report of the UN Secretary-General on addressing large movements of refugees and migrants. This report was released on 20 April.

The HLM will convene on 19 September 2016, in New York, US. [Co-Facilitators’ Letter and Revised Resolution Text of 29 April] [Co-Facilitators’ Letter and 13 April Draft] [IISD RS Story on 13 April Draft] [IISD RS Story on UN Secretary-General’s Report]


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