What is the International Organisation for Migration (IOM)?

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What is the International Organisation for Migration (IOM)? Blog Image


The International Organisation for Migration recently said 662 illegal migrants were rescued off the coast of Libya.

About International Organisation for Migration (IOM)

  • Established in 1951, IOM is the leading inter-governmental organization in the field of migration. 
  • The IOM defines the term migrant as: “a person who moves away from his or her place of usual residence, whether within a country or across an international border, temporarily or permanently, and for a variety of reasons.” 
  • It offers, at the request of States, its support to migrants but also to internally displaced persons, refugees and other uprooted people in the four broad areas of migration and development, facilitating migration, regulating migration and addressing forced migration.
  • IOM works to ensure
    • the orderly and humane management of migration
    • to promote international cooperation on migration issues
    • to assist in the search for practical solutions to the challenges of migration
    • to provide humanitarian assistance to migrants in need, including refugees and internally displaced people.
  • In 2016, IOM entered into an agreement with the United Nations, becoming a related organization. 
  • IOM serves as coordinator of the United Nations network on migration, established by the Secretary-General in 2018.
  • IOM is the UN agency in charge of labour mobility and migration in general. 
  • It currently has 172 member states and 8 states holding observer status. India is a member of IOM.
  • Its headquarters are located in Geneva, Switzerland.

Q1) What is the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)?

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees was established on December 14, 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and co-ordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee problems worldwide. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of refugees. It strives to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another State, with the option to return home voluntarily, integrate locally or to resettle in a third country. It also has a mandate to help stateless people.

Source: 662 illegal migrants rescued off Libyan coast