Governments Consider Third Draft of Global Refugee Compact
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A two-day consultation is underway in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss the third draft of the global compact on refugees.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, circulated the revised text and a summary of the main changes made since the second draft.

13 June 2018: UN Member States are holding consultations on the third draft of the global compact on refugees. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, circulated the revised text and a summary of the main changes made since the second draft, and noted that his office will provide an update on the consultations on 22 June 2018.

The latest draft, dated 4 June 2018, notes that the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) adopted by the UN General Assembly (A/RES/71/1, Annex I) is an “integral part” of the global compact. The remainder of the compact is the Programme of Action, which consists of Part A on ‘Mechanisms for burden- and responsibility-sharing’ and Part B on ‘Areas in need of support,’ and a section on Follow-up and Review.

The 4 June version of the compact (Draft 3) is 20 pages long and includes 104 paragraphs. According to the ‘Explanatory memorandum on main changes’ provided by UNHCR, the introduction now refers to the principle of sovereign equality of States, and to the importance of national ownership and leadership. The paragraphs on prevention and root causes now clarify that climate, environmental degradation and natural disasters are not themselves causes of refugee movements, but may interact with the drivers of refugee movements.

In the chapeau, a paragraph has been added to address that population movements are not always homogenous; they may involve both refugees and migrants, both refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), and movements resulting from sudden-onset natural disasters as well as environmental degradation. UNHCR notes that the paragraph “has been carefully drafted to reflect operational realities, in a spirit of consensus, also focusing on the practical cooperation between relevant actors, including UNHCR and IOM.”

Other key changes have been made in the sections addressing: the Global Refugee Forum; Support Platforms; humanitarian funding, country ownership and leadership, and the private sector; data and evidence; reception and admission and the Asylum Capacity Support Group (on which further information is provided in a non-paper). The revised text also clarifies that the three-year resettlement strategy will be concluded by the second Global Refugee Forum in 2021.

On follow-up and review, the revised draft specifies that the Global Refugee Forum will serve as the main vehicle for measuring progress towards the achievement of the objectives of the global compact.

A two-day consultation in Geneva, Switzerland, from 12-13 June 2018, is the fifth formal consultation in the negotiation process on the global compact on refugees. UNHCR will brief UN Member States on the consultations on 22 June 2018, in New York, US. [Letter from UNHCR and Third Draft] [UNHCR Website on Consultation Process]

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