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Archbishop Ivan Jurkovic, Holy See Mission (Geneva, Switzerland), Wikimedia Commons, Водник

Archbishop Ivan Jurkovic, Holy See Mission (Geneva, Switzerland), Wikimedia Commons, Водник

Archbishop Jurkovič: Expand Paths to Resettlement

More Widespread Implementation of Private and Community Sponsorship Programs

“Over the course of the thematic discussions last year, the Delegation of the Holy See highlighted some concrete measures to expand the number and range of alternative legal pathways for safe, voluntary resettlement, in full respect of the principle of non-refoulement,” said Archbishop Ivan Jurkovič, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations and Other International Organizations in Geneva, at the Third Formal Consultation towards a Global Compact on Refugees Statement 3 – Solutions in  Geneva, on April 11, 2018

“These measures include more widespread implementation of private and community sponsorship programs; the opening of humanitarian corridors and granting of special temporary visas for refugees in particularly vulnerable situations and promoting greater respect for the unity of the family by expanding family reunification visas.”

The archbishop’s statement:

Thank you, Madam Moderator.

Over the course of the thematic discussions last year, the Delegation of the Holy See highlighted some concrete measures to expand the number and range of alternative legal pathways for safe, voluntary resettlement, in full respect of the principle of non-refoulement. These measures include more widespread implementation of private and community sponsorship programs; the opening of humanitarian corridors and granting of special temporary visas for refugees in particularly vulnerable situations and promoting greater respect for the unity of the family by expanding family reunification visas. 1

Madam Moderator,

Temporary solutions in a time of emergency should make way as soon as possible to the promotion, adoption and firm implementation of durable solutions that contribute to the wellbeing of both host communities and those to whom they offer protection, promotion, and integration. This Delegation welcomes the inclusion in the Draft of efforts to support reconciliation and confidence-building measures as well as the participation of refugees and returnees in peacebuilding activities. As recalled by Pope Francis, “it is likewise important that the many refugees who have found shelter and refuge in neighboring countries, …, be able to return home.” 2

While voluntary repatriation continues to be the durable solution sought by many refugees, it is also important to support countries who elect to resolve a refugee situation locally. This Delegation welcomes that the Draft acknowledges that integration is a dynamic and two-way process, based on the culture of the encounter. In this regard, access to language training is crucial for local integration, albeit of a temporary nature. At the same time, it is important to recall that every refugee has duties toward the host country, which require, in particular, that he/she respect its laws and regulations for the achievement of the common good of all.

Madam Moderator,

Lastly, the Delegation of the Holy See wishes to echo Pope Francis’ words that the Global Compacts “need to be inspired by compassion, foresight, and courage, so as to take advantage of every opportunity to advance the peace-building process. Only in this way can the realism required of international politics avoid surrendering to cynicism and to the globalization of indifference”.3

Thank you, Madam Moderator.

 

1 Cf. Responding to Refugees and Migrants: Twenty Action Points, Migrants and Refugees Section, Holy See’s Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development.

2 Pope Francis, Address to the Diplomatic Corps Accredited to the Holy See, 8 January 2018

3 Pope Francis, Message for the Celebration of the 51st World Day of Peace, 1 January 2018.

 

Copyright © 2017 Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations, All rights reserved.

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