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Opening Segment from the Global Compact on Migration
13 Jul 2018 -  After more than a year of discussions and consultations among Member States, local officials, civil society and migrants themselves, the text of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration was finalized on Friday.

Louise Arbour, Special Representative for International Migration, told reporters the agreement “is about people,” adding that “you cannot treat the issues of the autonomy of people in the same way that you treat some of these other issues, even though all of them have huge economic impact.”

The agreement will be formally adopted by Member States at an Intergovernmental Conference, which will be held in Marrakesh, Morocco, on 10 and 11 December.

Arbour said, “what I hope to see in Marrakesh is an opening to a much, much more broader constituency on the basis of a text that is very rich, that has 23 objectives, it has a huge series of all kinds of actions.”

She said Marrakesh “should be the venue where these will start to be unpacked, with states and other partners coming in with, as I said, innovative practices, commit pledges and commitments.”

Asked about the United States’ non-participation in the agreement, General Assembly President, Miroslav Lajčák said, “obviously it would be much better if the US were a part of this effort, at the same time we still have 192 countries that agreed on the text of the compact and we keep the door open for the United States to come back.”

Earlier, after co-facilitators, Mexican Ambassador Juan José Gómez Camacho and Swiss Ambassador Jürg Lauber, hit the gavel marking the agreement, Arbour said “for migrants, for the communities in which they settle and for the people they leave behind, the Global Compact presents a blueprint for hope. Human mobility will be with us, as it has always been. Its chaotic, dangerous exploitative aspects cannot be allowed to become a new normal.”