Minister Shahid reiterates Government’s Commitment to promote Safe and Orderly Migration at the Formal Launch of the UN Network on Migration in the Maldives

31 May 2021

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdulla Shahid, today delivered a pre-recorded video statement at the event held by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations (UN) Maldives, to launch the UN Network on Migration in the Maldives.

In his statement, Minister Shahid recognised the UN Network on Migration as a coordinated support system that promotes human rights and the well-being of migrant communities worldwide. He noted that launching this Network locally would contribute to the Government’s efforts in realising the visions outlined in the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration (GCM), and in turn the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Minister Shahid also highlighted the challenges faced by migrants, particularly in the context of the Maldives. He explained how the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated their vulnerabilities, and outlined the various measures that are being undertaken by the Government to curb the impacts the pandemic has on migrant workers. The Government’s immediate response to the COVID-19 pandemic included the establishment of dedicated flu clinics for migrant workers and conducting multilingual awareness programmes, and later the launching of the countrywide vaccination campaign that includes the migrant community.

Moving forward, Minister Shahid reiterated the Government’s unwavering commitment to addressing the challenges in promoting safe and orderly migration. In this regard, he highlighted the ongoing voluntary repatriation programme for undocumented workers and the revitalisation of the Prevention of Human Trafficking Act. Before concluding, Minister Shahid thanked neighbouring countries, the UN Country Team and IOM for their continued assistance and expressed the Government’s support to the UN Network on Migration in the Maldives.

Minister Shahid was joined in this event by Foreign Secretary Abdul Ghafoor Mohamed who was attending in his capacity as the Chief Guest of the event. The launching event was convened in virtual format and was attended by high-level officials from Government agencies, UN entities and the diplomatic corps. It also featured two interactive panel discussions among respective stakeholders.

The UN Network on Migration is a global support system established by the United Nations to strengthen its coordination on migration and to enable effective and timely implementation of the GCM. IOM serves as the Coordinator and Secretariat of all constituent parts of the UN Network on Migration.