Emmaus International

 Last year, on 18 December 2019, the United Nations Secretary General marked International Migrants’ Day by urging leaders to ensure migrants receive equal protection of all their human rights. It has to be said that there was no follow up to this message and the situation has deteriorated even further as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

We have observed discourse disconnected from reception practices actually put in place, an abyssal gap between political commitments and the current situation on the ground, along with practically non-existent specific protection measures during the pandemic. Emmaus International, like so many other civil society voices, will continue denouncing the security and repressive arsenal brazenly deployed by many governments and witnessed by Emmaus groups around the world on a daily basis. These governments are flouting all national and international legal protections to which they should be firmly committed.

This 18 December, we reaffirm our deep commitment to Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and to the freedom of movement and settlement of all people as the only option for building a world of peace. The denial of this alternative by today’s governments is a grave failure that cannot be forgiven in light of current and future social and climate issues.

Emmaus International has been involved for several years in building an alternative governance of international migration based on dignified welcome and respect for fundamental rights. To this end, it works with CCFD-Terre solidaire and the Utopia movement to create links with local authorities. In France, this is primarily with ANVITA, along with other civil societies in Europe, the Americas and Africa, all of which have alternative practices to offer migrants a dignified welcome to their territories. This International Migrants' Day is therefore an opportunity to celebrate the multitude of solidarity initiatives that are carried out at all costs throughout the world, despite the growing context of repression and criminalisation of social movements!