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Protecting Migrant Persons' Human Rights Is a Priority for Latin America and the Caribbean

1 October 2013|News

On 3 and 4 October, ECLAC will present the region’s migration challenges at the Second High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development.


Migrantes sentados esperando
Foto: René de Jesus Araujo/EFE

Latin America and the Caribbean's migration challenges will be discussed at the Second High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, which will be held on 3 and 4 October at the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) will present the contents of the report from the Latin America and Caribbean Preparatory Meeting for the High-Level Dialogue, which was organized together with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and held in Santiago, Chile, on 10 and 11 July 2013.

At that meeting, experts discussed the current interaction between migration and human rights and development - with emphasis on the Latin American and Caribbean situation - in order to boost policymaking and agreements in this area to ensure respect for human rights and the achievement of equality.

The regional meeting was divided up into four roundtable discussions examining the consequences of international migration on sustainable development, measures to ensure respect for the human rights of all migrants, the strengthening of cooperation and the particular characteristics of the region.

Following the meeting, ECLAC was responsible for producing the report compiling the main debates and comments, with emphasis on a Latin American and Caribbean vision underlying the implementation of policies and regulations in the sphere of migration, away from control and security points of view.

The messages in the document, which will be presented to the High-Level Dialogue, include the experts' insistence on the need to prioritize human rights protection for all migrants  - irrespective of their migration status.

The document emphasis the specific nature of Latin America and the Caribbean in terms of migration, which requires building an agenda for governance based on the interests of the region.

The experts also stated that inequality is at the root of international migration, which is why the region's aims in terms of development and human rights protection are inextricably linked to the building of societies where the decision to migrate or not to migrate is a genuinely free choice.

The document also highlights the importance of promoting coherence among various bodies involved in migration policymaking and of strengthening and integrating regional processes.