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Guidelines aim at States, the private sector, international organisations and civil society responding to needs of migrants in countries experiencing conflicts or natural disasters

IOM
Chadian evacuees board a plane to Chad from Central African Republic, February 2014

The Migrants in Countries in Crisis Initiative has launched extensive guidelines aimed at improving the protection of international migrants caught up in crises such as conflict, civil unrest or natural disaster in the countries where they have settled.

These non-binding guidelines are the outcome of a project co-chaired by the Governments of the Philippines and the United States which began following the fleeing of 800,000 migrants from conflict after the Libyan uprising of 2011. The guidelines note that today more people than ever before live in a country other than the one in which they were born. In emphasising that all people are entitled to international human rights, the guidelines point out that migrants in countries experiencing conflicts or natural disasters can be overlooked due to a lack of understanding of migrants' often particular needs. The guidelines aim to better equip States, private sector actors, international organisations, civil society and other actors in crisis preparedness, emergency response, and post-crisis action.

The guidelines are arranged around ten principles which are intended to inform, underpin and guide actions to protect migrants; fifteen guidelines that broadly identify actions needed to better protect migrants, and a selection of practices - examples that illustrate best use of the guidelines.

As part of the MICIC initiative IMI Senior Research Officer Robtel Neajai Pailey is conducting research in collaboration with the Vienna-based International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD). She is working specifically on case studies focused on four migrant host countries: Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, Libya and South Africa, and carrying out data collection in four main country of origin sites: Accra, Ghana; Niamey, Niger; Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and N’Djamena, Chad.

Robtel's research aims to provide accessible, methodologically robust and policy relevant data on the immediate impacts and longer-term effects of these crises on migrants, their families and the wider society in the countries of origin. A MICIC Issue Brief written by Robtel will shortly be published.

Read the full Guidelines to Protect Migrants in Countries Experiencing Conflict or Natural Disaster

Read more about IMI's Migrants in Countries in Crisis research project