Sanctioning the highest levels of Myanmar’s military is an incredibly important if belated step. Although the sanctions are limited to travel restrictions, the move signifies that Washington is finally getting serious about accountability. It also acknowledges what the State Department itself has documented – that ethnic cleansing has taken place in Myanmar with virtual impunity.
Countries throughout the Americas are facing significant migration and refugee challenges. As human mobility increases, governments must commit to respond. Together with organizations from throughout the region, Refugees International has formed the Coalition on Human Mobility in the Americas, to elevate the matter before the Organization of American States 49th General Assembly. In its statement, presented on June 26, 2019, the Coalition highlighted four key priorities.
Refugees International President Eric Schwartz comments on the tragic image of Oscar Alberto Martinez Ramirez and his 23-month-old daughter Valeria from El Salvador whose deaths are the inevitable result of inhumane and unconscionable policies that prevent people from seeking asylum in safety and dignity.
The stories we are publishing today in observance of World Refugee Day are powerful examples of individuals who have overcome obstacles thrust upon them through no fault of their own. They arrived in their places of refuge or resettlement unsure and often alone, and have thrived as writers, musicians, social workers, advocates, and more. They are mothers, fathers, sisters, sons, friends—and neighbors.
Following the registration period for Venezuelan refugees in Trinidad and Tobago, thousands remain unregistered. Refugees International is gravely concerned about the possibility that arrests and deportations may follow and urges the government of Trinidad and Tobago to extend the registration period.
As Mozambique prepares to host an international pledging conference May 31-June 1 for reconstruction following cyclones Idai and Kenneth, Refugees International urges donor governments, UN agencies, and most importantly, the Mozambican government to prioritize support for cyclone-affected communities in three ways: boost funding for immediate lifesaving assistance, invest in work opportunities for displaced people, and prepare for a looming food crisis.
Since the Syrian regime and its Russian ally stepped up their bombardment of Idlib province in February, more than 140,000 civilian men, women, and children have been forced to flee for their lives. It is difficult to overstate the urgency of this looming humanitarian disaster if nothing is done to protect these people who often have lost everything.