Covid-19 blocked 2 to 3 million people at the borders, says António Vitorino
The International Organization for Migration, led by António Vitorino, launched a second appeal for financial aid to respond to “a new phenomenon that, until now, has not been very worrying and that has happened because of the pandemic: blocked migrants”.
Between two and three million migrants are “blocked” worldwide due to the covid-19 pandemic and border closures, a phenomenon for which the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is asking for funding and support.
The organization, created by the United Nations, “has now launched a second appeal [for financial aid], by the end of the year, to address a new phenomenon that, until now, has not been very worrying and that has become because of pandemic: migrants blocked, ”explained the IOM director-general in an interview with Lusa on the eve of completing two years at the helm of the organization.
The blocked migrants, whom António Vitorino estimates are “between two and three million people on a global scale” are people who “intended to return to their countries of origin because of the pandemic, and who, suddenly, because of the closing of borders, because of the travel ban and because of the containment measures they were blocked ”.
Many of these migrants were stranded close to the borders and, although “their desire is to return to their countries of origin to be able to face the challenges of the pandemic in their places of origin, with their families, with the social protection networks inherent to the communities of origin ”, they cannot move, he described.
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