NCHR calls for measures to address root causes of migration

Report calls for dedicated awareness units in smuggling-prone areas

​ Our Correspondent May 22, 2024


The National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) has called for addressing the root causes of migration through sector-specific programmes and local development initiatives.

The recommendation was made in a study titled “Perilous Journeys: Unravelling Irregular Migration from Pakistan,” launched by NCHR in collaboration with the International Organisation on Migration (IOM) and Ministry of Foreign Affairs Denmark on Tuesday.

Federal Minister for Law and Justice Azam Nazeer Tarar was the chief guest on the occasion.

The report calls for dedicated awareness units in smuggling-prone areas, awareness campaigns, special investigation units within districts, investment in training systems to enhance human capital development and fiscal benefits and improved coordination and data sharing among the stakeholders.

The report also recommends clarity on responsibilities among law enforcement agencies, the establishment of well-defined pathways for regular migration, inter-institutional coordination, poverty alleviation and literacy promotion among vulnerable communities, enhancing the prospects of safe, orderly and regular migration accommodating diverse skills and provision of incentives to retain high-skilled professionals in the country.Speaking on this occasion, chairperson Rabiya Javeri Agha said that the commission, through this report, aims to comprehensively examine the landscape of irregular migration originating from Pakistan.

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“It also emphasises the distinction between human trafficking and migrant smuggling while shedding light on the drivers of migration, gaps in policy and legislation and the associated human rights abuses.

Tarar appreciated the efforts of NCHR and said that irregular migration is a serious global issue.

He emphasised that it is primarily the state's responsibility to provide its citizens with an environment where they can envision their future within the country. However, this environment can only be created through the collaborative efforts of all stakeholders.

“Such studies guide these efforts in the right direction,” he said.

The report says that the primary driver of migration from Pakistan is economic opportunity, along with factors such as job availability, education access, and social networks influencing destination choices.

It says that a significant portion of Pakistan’s population expresses a desire to leave the country, particularly in urban areas.

The report mentions that Pakistani authorities while noting the complexity of measuring irregular migration, have highlighted a new route via Dubai to Egypt or Libya leading to Europe. In the first half of 2023, around 13,000 left Pakistan for Libya or Egypt. Notably, about 10,000 of these migrants have not returned.


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