UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will arrive in Marrakech this weekend to attend the Intergovernmental Conference to adopt the landmark UN migration pact.
Rabat – Guterres “will be traveling to Marrakech, Morocco over the weekend where he will attend the Intergovernmental Conference to adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration on 10 and 11 December,” announced UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a Friday briefing.
Dujarric said that 135 countries have informed the UN they will be attending the Marrakech conference, suggesting their commitment to the UN Global Pact to regulate international migrations.
“We also expect more of them to register on the first day of the conference,” the UN spokesperson added.
In July, 192 UN member states, except the US, approved the global migration pact, which aims “to better manage international migration, address its challenges, and strengthen migrants’ rights while contributing to sustainable development.”
Although a number of countries have withdrew from the pact, UN Special Representative for International Migration Louise Arbour has expressed confidence in the future of an international pact on migration.
Arbour, who arrived in Marrakech earlier this week to attend the 11th Global Forum on Migration and Development, will chair the Marrakech intergovernmental conference.
The US, Italy, Australia, Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Israel, Latvia, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, and Switzerland, are the countries whose governments have so far declined to join the UN pact. However, the UN hopes that some of the reluctant countries, still in the consideration phase, may be convinced to later join the pact.
The pact is not legally binding after its formal adoption.
“This is about helping countries manage migration. This is about reaffirming the rights of countries to obviously control their own borders. It seems to defy logic to see how you can manage migration without having a global conversation,” Dujarric said Friday.
Guterres will officially launch the Migration Network at the Marrakech conference.
On December 10, the UN secretary general will also participate in a high-level event to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights along with several former High Commissioners for Human Rights. ,
The intergovernmental conference in Marrakech for the adoption of the UN migration compact represents a platform for cooperation and a positive change in the way that migration policies and challenges are approached.