UNITED NATIONS, New York, 16 January — The International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the United Nations TOGETHER initiative launched a photo exhibition at Headquarters today with the aim of drawing attention to the plight of migrants in vulnerable situations around the world.
“The photo exhibit serves to highlight how crisis-related migration flows are growing in scale and complexity and inducing new forms of migration-related humanitarian challenges, both internally and across borders,” said Ashraf El Nour, Director of IOM’s Office to the United Nations in New York. “Migrants need protection as their vulnerability to exploitation, trafficking and violence heightens during crises,” he stressed.
IOM recently released preliminary figures on all migrant or refugee deaths in 2016, noting that the number of migrant and refugee fatalities were approaching 7,500 as three-year totals reached 18,501 in January 2017 (see missingmigrants.iom.int). In 2016, the number of migrant arrivals from the Mediterranean had topped 363,348, with an additional 5,079 deaths at sea. Many more millions of people remain displaced and at risk within their countries of origin.
As the exhibition reveals, the absence of protection or timely solutions during crises often leads migrants to adopt negative coping mechanisms and exposes affected populations to significant risks.
While stories of migrants escaping crises rarely make positive news, the United Nations launched the TOGETHER initiative during the Summit Addressing Large Movements of Refugees and Migrants, held on 19 September 2016, to help change negative perceptions and attitudes towards refugees and migrants, to strengthen the social contract binding host countries and communities, as well as refugees and migrants.
The exhibition will be on view until 26 January in the 1B Neck area at Headquarters, accessible to holders of United Nations grounds passes. It can also be viewed online at unofficeny.iom.int/iomun-together-initiative-photo-exhibit-migrants-caught-crisis.
For more information on TOGETHER, please visit together.un.org/. For further information, please contact the IOM Office to the United Nations in New York: Anna Reichenberg: +1 212 681-7000, ext. 257; firstname.lastname@example.org.