Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - UN criticises countries quitting migration pact



UN criticises countries quitting migration pact

UN criticises countries quitting migration pact

A UN envoy on Tuesday took a swipe at countries dropping out of the UN migration pact, saying they were displaying “buyer’s remorse” months after endorsing the non-binding deal.

The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was agreed at the UN in July following 18 months of negotiations and will be formally adopted at a conference in Marrakesh on December 10 and 11.

The UN quit negotiations early on, in December, and was followed by Hungary seven months later.

Since then, Australia, Israel, Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland and Bulgaria have either publicly disavowed the pact or notified the UN that they are withdrawing.

The pact promoting cooperation to deal with the world’s growing migrant flows has been targeted by right-wing politicians who have denounced it as an affront to their countries’ national sovereignty.

“Some politicians, as it turned out, would say something like [migration is a bad thing],” Louise Arbour, the UN special envoy for international migration, said. “This is completely ridiculous. Migration is a thing. It’s not a bad thing, not a good thing. It’s a thing.”

Arbour, a former Supreme Court of Canada judge and UN rights chief, said the countries exiting the compact were dealing with “buyer’s remorse” after taking part in the lengthy negotiations and agreeing to the final text.

She suggested that countries quitting the UN’s first ever migration agreement would have to answer for their turnaround.

“It’s going to be for the countries concerned to examine where it leaves them as international players,” she said, “after having agreed, extracted concessions from others and agreed on a text.”

The global pact lays out 23 objectives to open up legal migration and better manage the influx as the number of people on the move worldwide has increased to 250 million, or just over three per cent of the world’s population.

The deal had been held up as an example of a UN diplomatic success achieved without the US at a time when President Donald Trump is questioning the relevance of the world body.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel is expected to be among the high-profile leaders at the Marrakesh conference next month, but it remains unclear how many other countries will be represented.

After the Marrakesh conference, the General Assembly is set to adopt a resolution formally endorsing the migration deal.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh curfew starts today

    A two-week curfew from 8pm to 5am starts today in Phnom Penh, a day after a sub-decree detailing administrative measures to contain Covid-19 was issued by Prime Minister Hun Sen. “Travelling in Phnom Penh is temporally banned between 8pm and 5am,” said Phnom Penh governor

  • Covid in Kingdom hits ‘critical point’

    The Covid-19 situation in Cambodia has reached a critical point, the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned, as cases surge with two more deaths and 265 infections reported over the weekend. On March 28 alone, the Ministry of Health recorded 86 Covid-19 cases linked to the February 20

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Cambodia set for large-scale vaccination campaign as Covid spreads

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed all provincial authorities to get ready for a large-scale vaccination campaign, with at least one million doses to be administered per month. “We will roll out at least one million doses. The vaccines we have purchased and received as

  • Time to Rise by rapper, chapei legend is viral hit with ancient-modern mix

    Kong Nay is known internationally as the master of the chapei dang veng, a traditional Cambodian instrument resembling a long-necked lute or guitar with two nylon strings that he was already playing professionally by the age of 15. Nay is sometimes referred to as the Cambodian