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Message of H.E. Amira Elfadil, Commissioner for Social Affairs, AU Commission on the Occasion of International Migrants Day 18 December

December 18, 2017

Dear Fellow Africans,
On this day of 18 December 2017, the African Union joins the international community to observe International Migrants Day. Greater attention has been placed on the migration trajectory in Africa and the role it could play in promoting an inclusive balanced development and integration of the continent. This increased attention has been manifested at different levels of decision-making and in different forms, including through the adoption of both the Migration Policy Framework for Africa and the African Common Position on Migration and Development in 2006 by the 9th Ordinary Executive Council.
Issues of migration and mobility have pre-occupied the minds of African leaders for quite some time now, given the centrality of human movement within Africa for continental integration.
The 25th African Union (AU) Assembly Declaration (Assembly/AU/Decl.6(XXV)) on Migration adopted during the Summit of the AU Heads of State and Government held in Johannesburg, South Africa on14-15 June 2015 reaffirmed the commitment of African leaders towards promoting regional integration through mobility while addressing irregular migration.
Dear Fellow Africans,
You are aware of the suffering and the peril of our people in the Desert and the Mediterranean as they go to Europe in search of greener pastures. How do we tackle the root causes of irregular migration? How do we prevent young people from dying in the desert and in the Mediterranean Sea? We need to refocus the policies and measures to manage migration inside Africa where most of the Migration since most migration takes place in the continent. As such, the revised Migration Policy Framework for Africa (MPFA) and its Year Action Plan, as adopted in the 2nd Specialized Technical Committee (STC) on Migration, Refugees and Displaced Persons, Ordinary Session of Ministerial Meeting in Kigali, Rwanda from 20 – 21 October 2017 will facilitate addressing various migration and mobility challenges faced by Member States. It is my hope that we will all align our policies to document so as to enhance effective collaboration and improved information sharing.

I cannot conclude without mentioning the significance progress we have made in the Horn of Africa Initiative on Human Trafficking and Smuggling of Migrants for the last 3 Years the establishment of the Regional Operation Centre (ROC) in Khartoum is one commendable achievement that will help Member States tackle organized criminal groups involved in the human trafficking and smuggling. In future, the Initiative will expand its work to cover other regions of the continent as we cannot afford to have any weak link in the fight towards transnational organized crime.
I thank you all.

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