[Statement] IMA on US withdrawal from GCM

US withdrawal from migration pact shows callous disregard of need to protect rights of migrants: Trump wants perpetration of exploitation and forced displacement

Reference: Ms. Eni Lestari, IMA Chairperson
4 December 2017

The recent US government’s pronouncement of withdrawing from the process of creating the United Nations Global Compact on Migration is a callous disregard of the need for the international community to address pressing concerns of the millions of displaced peoples. It reeks of arrogance just so it can ensure the unchecked implementation of anti-immigrant policies within the US while maintaining the current global migration design of forced migration and exploitation of migrants.

In a statement signed by US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the US government stated that the provisions of the GCM are “inconsistent with the US Immigration and refugee policies and the Trump administration’s immigration principles.”

Clearly, what the US government meant was that challenges thrown to the GCM process by migrants and advocates to make the said compact address human rights, labor issues, gender concerns, and the root causes of migration – even while States drumbeat resources gained from migration – are not consistent with Trump’s immigration policy directions.

The Trump immigration policies include massive cuts in the number of immigrants allowed in the US, widespread crackdown – arrest, detention and deportation of undocumented migrants – and further exploitation of immigrants allowed to stay in the country. As President, Donald Trump has pushed for the construction of a wall on the US-Mexico border and implemented a travel ban on six Muslim majority countries.

The International Migrants Alliance (IMA) believes that such withdrawal is a total disregard of the importance and principles of international cooperation and solidarity, and an arbitrary reneging from commitments reflected in the New York Declaration that resulted from the UN Summit on Migrants and Refugees held in September last year.

Even before the non-binding global compact is negotiated and its implementation providing no assurance for drastic and concrete changes, the Trump administration is already afraid to be put accountable to the intensifying displacement of people due to neoliberal policies and the multiple wars that are both championed by the US. The twin measures that the US upholds perpetuate massive poverty and unemployment, environmental degradation, constriction of social services, and a host of other grave impacts that force people to leave their countries of origin only to be trapped in further vulnerable and exploitative conditions in countries of destination.

IMA believes that such decision made by the Trump administration to withdraw from the GCM process can create a bandwagon effect especially on the commitments that major receiving countries of migrants and refugees will pledge. The GCM that is already in a tenuous position to resolve issues of migrants will end up as another shallow pact of UN Member States.

The International Migrants Alliance, the global alliance of migrants, immigrants and refugee organizations is calling its members in more than 30 countries including its allies to remain vigilant in this on-going process of crafting a global compact on migration and refugees.

IMA will continue to expose and oppose the root causes of forced migration and the exploitation of migrants. IMA will pursue the building of the global movement of migrants to resist neoliberal dictates and agenda on migration. It will continue to advance changes in all levels – national to international – that will uphold the rights and wellbeing of migrants and bring about a more democratic and pro-people system where migration is a free exercise of right and not an instrument and result of an exploitative and oppressive capitalist system.

Uphold and Protect the Peoples Collective Rights and Dignity of the Rohingya

IMA Statement on the Rohingya Exodus
18 September 2017

The Rohingya deserve the full recognition, respect and protection of their rights, dignity and life as people by all nations and governments, especially Bangladesh and Myanmar.

This is the statement of the International Migrants Alliance (IMA) as we extend our strongest solidarity to the Rohingya who are now suffering the worst tragedy at the hands of the Myanmar military government.

Right now, more than 400,000 people, many of whom are women, children and elderly, have fled from Myanmar to Bangladesh to escape what can be called a state-instigated ethnic cleansing campaign. Rohingya people are Muslim while Myanmar is predominantly Buddhist.

Since August 25, the Myanmar military has cracked down on the Rohingya community in Rakhine State, using violent measures such as the scorched-earth campaign (burning down entire villages), rape, indiscriminate firing and strafing, and ultimately, massacre. This was supposedly a state response to alleged attacks by a group called Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army on 30 police posts in the area.

While condemnation from the international community has poured in, the Myanmar government apparently sees no reason to stop terrorizing the Rohingya people. There were also reports of Burmese military allegedly planning to bomb passage areas the Rohingya were using to escape the attacks.

The Rohingya remain a stateless people, virtual victims to what seems to be an onerous tennis match of accountabilities between the Myanmar and Bangladesh governments. Myanmar refuses citizenship to Rohingya reasoning that the latter actually come from East Bengal, and therefor should be responsibility of Bangladesh. Bangladesh, on the other hand, denies political and civil rights to Rohingya stating they are Burmese.

The IMA joins the international community in calling for a humanitarian campaign to provide immediate support, housing and all possible services to the Rohingya, both those who are already in Bangladesh and many more who are still in Myanmar.

Moreover, we urge both the Bangladesh and Myanmar governments to uphold human rights above all and ultimately stop the attacks on the Rohingya people.

We demand both governments:

1) To provide the respect, recognition and protection that the Rohingya rightfully and ultimately deserve;
2) To recognize the Rohingya as people and be accord them their much deserved citizenship;
3) To uphold, promote and respect their collective rights, which include their rights to live as a community, ethnicity and culture, among others; and
4) To provide the Rohingya to opportunity and the environment to live in peace, with dignity and without fear of discrimination, violence or ostracism.

We likewise call on governments to uphold and respect Rohingya asylum seekers, especially those in Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

We hope that the United Nations wield political will and enjoin both states to derive through peaceful means concrete actions and mechanism to achieve these demands.

The Rohingya deserve a life of just peace, solidarity and acceptance. End the horrors of fascism, racism and violence that befall them and their children.

No one deserves to be stateless. No one deserves to experience violence.

Life, dignity and justice for the Rohingya!

Reference:
Eni Lestari, IMA chairperson

IMA-USA Statement for May Day 2017

Migrant Workers and Refugees Rise Up!

Build solidarity with workers and oppressed and exploited peoples of the world!

The International Migrants Alliance-USA Chapter (IMA-USA) stands with all the workers of the world on May 1st, International Workers’ Day.

Ironically, it was in the United States where International Workers’ Day was initiated. Workers in Chicago started a general strike on May 1, 1886 to demand an 8-hour work day. A few days later, some workers were killed by state forces, prompting the bombing at the Haymarket Square, also known as the Haymarket Massacre. Around the world, International Workers’ Day has been commemorated on May 1, except for North America — the United States and Canada.

Continue reading

Statement of the International Migrants Alliance on the International Labor Day

18157971_642969909234587_245634245081580288_n

Migrant and Local Workers Unite:
Fight back against Imperialist Offensives

The International Migrants Alliance (IMA) stands in solidarity with workers of the world in celebrating the International Labor Day. The International Labor Day is highly significant for it commemorates the unity of workers around the world as they fight for decent jobs, living income, human rights and justice. This year, as imperialism intensifies its attacks on migrant and local workers and peoples, all the more we need to strengthen our solidarity and fight back. Continue reading

Statement of the International Migrants Alliance in commemoration of International Women’s Day 2017

Arouse, Organize and Mobilize Women Migrants, Immigrants and Refugees To Resist Attacks to our rights, and Against Oppression and Exploitation of Women

Statement of the International Migrants Alliance in commemoration of International Women’s Day 2017

The International Migrants Alliance (IMA) joins and salutes all the struggling women of the world in marking this year’s International Women’s Day with marches, protests, strikes and all forms of actions to resist worsening attacks on rights, oppression and exploitation of women. Continue reading

IMA Statement on 2016 Migrants Day

Strengthen the grassroots movement of migrants:
Fight back against neoliberal globalization, forced displacement and violations of our rights!

18 December 2016

On the occasion of the International Migrants Day, the International Migrants Alliance (IMA) gives our salute to all migrants and displaced people who continue to work on the ground to defend the rights and promote the wellbeing of the sector.

We give our highest regard to grassroots migrants who – despite odds and obstacles – continue to build their organized strength, empower their communities, expose their real conditions, and confront policies and powers that exploit, oppress and marginalize foreign workers.

Continue reading

HK FDW to address UN assembly for first time on rights of migrants vs exclusion, commodification and slavery

img_20160908_110751_hdr
Press Release
08 September 2016
For reference: Eni Lestari
Chairperson
Tel. No.: 96081475

HK FDW to address UN assembly for first time on rights of migrants vs exclusion, commodification and slavery

The world must know of the plight of migrant workers. The world must know that in Hong Kong, migrant domestic workers are still very much marginalized, excluded and unprotected.

Continue reading