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Migration and Sustainable Development!

Migrants face lots of challenges wherever they are whether its within Africa, Europe, Asia or America. These obstacles migrants face differ from one place to another. They face detention and harassment from the hosting governments, sometimes face force deportation to their respective countries of origin.

All these migrants have their own reasons to move. Some are economic migrants who move in search of better life and opportunities, others are refugees and asylum seekers who run away from their countries due to conflicts and instabilities there or are/were afraid of persecution of their governments.

Either way, these people left their places due to problems faced them. When it comes to humanitarian response and assistance, definitely their cases will be dealt differently according to the international laws, but they all got rights to be respected and not violated.

For instance, Puntland is located in the eastern part of Somalia. It has been a transit zone for mixed migration (mostly Somalis from south/central Somalia and Ethiopians) for so many years who cross the Gulf of Aden from Bosasso (Puntland) to Yemen. Migrants who are coming from Ethiopia sometimes travel by foot for almost a distance of about 1194-1226 kms. On the way these migrants starvation, sometimes face physical abuse, fall a victim of been trafficked or been detained and deported.

A tragic story that caught my attention was when four Oromo migrants had a car accident on 31st Aug 2012, one of them was seriously injured, broke his neck, some ribs and was in a coma for four days! He needed medical referral and had to be taken to other towns with better facilities, agencies hesitated to get involved and couldn’t secure funds to support him. Even UNHCR which is involved with helping IDPs and Refugees couldn’t help him since he was illegal migrant and wasn’t registered with them! He stayed in coma for four day and unfortunately dies on 4th sep 2012.

Host governments should at least put a policy to deal with migrants (both legal and illegal) to assist and take care of such incidents. Agencies also have to do their best and at some point help such cases. Migration will continue as long there is unequality.

It could be you, it could be someone you care and love, it could be someone close to you, it could be anyone of us. We all have to advocate for the wellbeing of others. We have to keep fighting for them, and try to make people aware of the painful moments some migrants face.

We always discuss inequality, but do we really practice it? Not at all. If every member of the society is been empowered, been educated with some sort of skills to sustain their life then at least these kind of problems would be overcome and many people would have been saved. We see women been raped and assaulted along their long journeys, some lose their lives and many more hardship to face.

Empowering all members of the society and creating jobs for them will solve these problems. It might not stop migration but definitely will reduce the trends.

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