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Updated On: Wednesday, 20 June 2018
Development Issues

Migration Compact Session Opens Mexico

Content by: South-South News

5 December 2017, New York, USA | South-South News — UN Special Representative for International Migration, Louise Arbour, said migration policies must be based on fact not perception adding that “de-humanizing” language and “pejorative talk of illegal immigrants which block reasoned discussion about the motives and the needs of individuals” must be avoided.

Speaking at the opening of a preparatory meeting on the Global Compact for Migration in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on December 4, Arbour said there is a lot of misperception in the migration field that needs to be addressed adding that the language used to discuss the issue often perpetuates unhelpful stereotypes. She said, “Such language might not do so intentionally, but it can have the effect of obscuring who migrants are and the fact that they are above all human beings.”

Arbour stressed the need to discuss migration in a manner that respects the dignity and rights of migrants and the needs and views of the communities hosting them alike. She said the Global Compact for Migration “is an opportunity to reorient the often toxic narrative against migrants towards a more accurate narrative on migration that recognizes the overwhelmingly positive impact and is prepared to address the challenges of migration in a sober realistic way.”

Mexican Foreign Minister Luis Videgaray Caso regretted the withdrawal of the United States from the Global Compact on migration and pledged to continue to support UN-promoted multilateralism. He said, “Mexico does not believe in criminalizing migrants. Mexico does not believe in walls, it believes in bridges. And we do not believe that any nation, no matter how big and powerful, can face the migratory phenomenon by themselves. That is why, we regret the decision by the government of the United States to withdraw from this collective effort.”

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