International Migrants Day Celebration

Najat Ahmed

Welcome to the Green Yard, I am very happy to see so many who have come today – esteemed members of the Government of Sudan, members of the diplomatic community, UN colleagues, friends – I am happy that you could join us in celebrating International Migrants Day. I particularly want to welcome the members of the migrant communities, we have been joined us this evening, members of the Ethiopian, Somali, Eritrean, Filipino, Yemeni, Bengali, Congolese, and Syrian communities here in Khartoum who have all contributed to this day.
I am pleased to announce that this evening we will be entertained by music and dancing from Ethiopia, Syria and Sudan. During the day Congolese, Ethiopian and Eritrean children came here and created paintings for us – you will see their paintings displayed here this evening.
The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed International Migrants Day in the year 2000 in recognition of the scale of the global migration phenomenon and the increasing number of people on the move. Over the last 18 years, IOM has used the event to recognise the positive contributions of migrants and their fundamental role in sustainable development.
International Migrants Day is an occasion when we reaffirm that migration is a driving force for progress and development, and highlights the importance of governments cooperating to ensure that migration is safe, orderly and dignified.
IOM has on International Migrants Day called for action to save the lives of migrants and prevent traffickers and smugglers from exploiting the desperate migrants who have felt compelled to move. For the fifth straight year we have witnessed the deaths of at least 2,000 irregular migrants seeking to reach Europe via the Mediterranean.
One in seven people in this world is a migrant. War, climate change, demographics, natural disasters, economic disparities and other global challenges all contribute to humankind’s growing reliance on migration to ensure the safety and well-being of individuals, families and communities.
Sudan’s location in particular has made it a major crossroads for hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people striving for a new life. The country has historically been a major source, transit and destination for migrants. The people of Sudan are incredibly welcoming and have responded with great kindness to the migrants in their country. I would like to commend the Government for hosting refugees for decades and the Sudanese host communities for supporting all migrants.
Sudan is a member state of IOM, and the Government’s efforts toward ensuring orderly, safe and responsible migration have benefitted migrants and Sudanese alike. IOM celebrates this trust, tolerance, and peaceful coexistence developed over the years.
As such, we have curated our programme tonight to showcase the cultural contributions that numerous migrant communities have brought with them here to Sudan, as well as the rich and diverse cultural traditions indigenous to the country. Please enjoy the music and dancing and please take the opportunity try the food and buy the handcrafts that are available this evening.
To conclude, I would like to thank you again for coming to our celebration tonight, I call on everyone to join us in commemorating International Migrants Day and advocate for safe, orderly and dignified migration for all.
The big number of immigrants who arrive at the coast of the Mediterranean on their way to Europe they start their journey across the Sudanese territories whereby the desert roads along the common borders between Egypt and Sudan and Libya represents major crossing points for the operation of smuggling immigrants and forms of suffering , fear and death
Massive numbers of immigrants from the states of central and east Africa on their way of reaching the first world countries and all this led to classifying Sudan as the biggest cross-point state for illegal migration in Africa as its vast borders neighboring seven African countries (Egypt, Ethiopia, Eritrea ,South Sudan State , Libya Chad and Central Africa ) makes it difficult for the authorities to control and monitor thousands of kilometers and tens of roads and abandoned routes taken by the immigrants.
With the escalation of illegal migration over the past years particularly to the European states overlooking the Mediterranean the attention of the European Union to Sudan started to increase in an unprecedented manner leading to putting forward cooperation on the file of combating illegal migration between the European Union and Sudan
Speculators affirmed that Sudan has continually exerting every effort of taking measures preventing illegal migration and limiting imigrants movement to Europe.Immigrants RoutesMost of the immigrants who head for Sudan in their long journey to Europe come from the countries of Ethiopia, Eritrea, the Horn of African, Somalia, Djibouti and they enter across East Sudan which is one of the big crossing points for illegal migration whereby tens of immigrants pour in across the east daily which the same road taken by the immigrants from the countries of central Africa in addition to few numbers of Syrian immigrants.

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