2015•01•28 Kuala Lumpur
Globally, about one billion people are migrants and this number is increasing every day. Key causes of this growing trend include natural disasters, conflicts, poverty, political crises, lack of services, work and education, and discrimination.
On 13 January 2015, UNU-IIGH hosted its first Public Symposium on Migration. Held in conjunction with the 5th Meeting of the UNU Migration Network, the symposium brought together migration experts from five United Nations University institutes to share their research and knowledge about the global migration phenomenon, and its impacts on health, with a range of participants from Malaysia and Singapore — most of them currently involved in migration related work.
The symposium was opened by Obijiofor Aginam, Senior Research Fellow at UNU-IIGH, and was followed by a presentation by Richard Towle, UNHCR’s representative in Malaysia, who spoke on the challenges of offering humanitarian protection to refugees and migrants in Malaysia, who make up 8.4 percent of that country’s population.
Symposium presentation topics included:
The symposium’s lively discussion was an opportunity for sharing and support. Areas of particular interest included rights of migrants, access to health treatment, support for family members and support for insurance. The symposium succeeded in bringing stakeholders and experts together to debate challenging questions on global migration and policy with a unique focus on Asia.