United Nations (@TRT)
On December 17th, the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN) approved the Global Pact for Refugees. This victory for human rights and international cooperation comes one week after the General Assembly approved the Global Pact on Migration.
181 countries signed the pact that outlines steps that the international community will take to guarantee the welfare of refugees. Three countries abstained, and the United States and Hungary voted against it. The United States had previously stated that, although it agreed with most of the Covenant, it did not want to accept a limitation on the detention of asylum seekers.
The Pact will try to give more support to the countries that host refugees, and when possible, help refugees to return to their countries of origin. It also calls for promoting the independence of refugees. To improve infrastructure and services to refugees, the pact will try to encourage more investment from governments and private sources.
Although the Covenant is not binding, it represents a possibility of progress for the international community. Currently there are more than 25 million refugees in the world, representing only a part of the 68 million people who have been forced to flee their homes because of violence. Under international law, to be considered a refugee, you have to cross an international border.
The Pact on Refugees received more votes in its favor than the Global Pact on Migration (which was supported by 164 countries). In general, the rights of refugees have been clearer and therefore more protected than those of migrants.
For more information in Spanish:
Asamblea de la ONU avala el Pacto Mundial sobre Refugiados (La Jornada, 18 de diciembre de 201).
Asamblea de la ONU aprueba pacto mundial sobre refugiados (Telesur, 18 de diciembre de 2018).
ONU: Asamblea General adopta el Pacto Mundial sobre Refugiados (Kausa Justa, 17 de diciembre de 2018).
For more information from SIPAZ:
National/International: 164 Countries Approve UN Global Migration Pact (January 2nd, 2019)