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PH to join migration global compact deal to curb human smuggling

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Thursday, August 16th, 2018

Migrants try to get products from a truck | REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov

MANILA, Philippines – Representatives from different countries converge in Manila for a two-day conference to tackle the future of migration.

The conference centers on the upcoming adoption of a global compact to promote safe and orderly migration and reduce human smuggling and trafficking.

According to Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs Sarah Lou Arriola, this is the first international and multilateral agreement on migration governance that the Philippines has strongly pushed for.

Arriola said the agreement culminates the lengthy negotiations on the contentious issue in new york, noting its aim to have a national policy and general framework in labor-receiving countries to prevent discrimination and other migration-related problems of Filipinos.

The official said the finalization of this deal was long overdue. It is envisioned to address the negative impacts of irregular migration while respecting migrant rights and promoting security and prosperity of countries of origin and destination.

The outcome of the conference will be submitted as input to the United Nations migration network for a conference in Geneva, Switzerland in October.

 “It’s a non-binding instrument…Siya ang minimum standard para kung paano dapat i-trato ang mga migrante sa buong mundo,” Usec. Sarah Lou Arriola of DFA Migrant Workers Affairs said.

 More than 190 countries will sign the global compact on migration agreement which is set to be formally adopted in Morocco in December.

According to Arriola, the Philippines is one of the pillars of the agreement which will hugely benefit over 10 million migrant Filipinos around the globe.

She noted that the GCM is a good start to promote the protection of migrants as the pact states the responsibilities and suggestions of various countries on the proper migrant treatment. – Cathy Maglalang / UNTV News and Rescue

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Venezuelans arrive in Peru ahead of passport deadline

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, August 23rd, 2018

Venezuelan migrants wait at the Interpol headquarters to get paperwork needed for a temporary residency permit in Lima, Peru, August 16, 2018. REUTERS/Mariana Bazo

It’s been one year and one day since David Pernia, a Venezuelan father of three, left his family behind to find construction work in Peru. With the country deeply mired in an economic crisis, the only way his family could survive was for him to take his chances here, in Lima, 2,700 miles (4350 kilometers) from Caracas.

With Peru announcing that it will begin requiring Venezuelans arriving to carry passports starting August 25, his wife Yance and their three children boarded buses to make their way through Colombia, Ecuador and finally to Peru to be reunited with him.

“My husband has been working here one year and he has done very well, thank God, and we’ve already been through 3 and a half years of this situation (crisis) in Venezuela,” she said. “So because of this situation of having the family far away from each other, we decided that since he couldn’t return anymore, we decided that we would come to be with him.”

As he waited for his father, 9-year-old Yoandro Pernia said he was excited to see him again but couldn’t shake the sadness of leaving behind his home, extended family, and friends.

“I’m happy and sad. It’s very difficult for me to express how I am. I’m happy because at last, I’ll see my father; but I’m sad because I left many people behind,” he said.

Just minutes later, Yoandro pressed his body against his father in a deep bear hug, then wiped away tears as his father hugged and kissed each of his two younger sisters.

“It just so happens that yesterday was the one year anniversary of my being here, of having left my children in Venezuela,” said Pernia, who was all smiles. “It just so happens that was yesterday. And today, one year and one day later, I am welcoming them here,” said Pernia, before escorting the family out of the bus station and through Lima, where they will make their new home.

The Pernias are just some of the Venezuelan migrants making the week-long arduous trip to Peru in an effort to arrive ahead of the August 25 deadline in which Peru will require passports for entry.

Many of those on the bus were being reunited with loved ones who had previously settled in Peru as millions have left Venezuela over the past year, settling across Latin America.

Mauricio Aparicio who works at the Marco Polo bus station said he sends money back home to help his father, who is battling stomach cancer.

Peru estimates that more than 20,000 Venezuelans could arrive in the country before the August 25 deadline. More than 400,000 Venezuelans have entered Peru in the last two years.

Previously, Peru had allowed Venezuelans to enter without passports but, as the increasing numbers of fleeing Venezuelans put pressure on local services, Lima introduced the new measure that requires all Venezuelans to hold passports.

The ballooning exodus has inundated border towns and flooded some Latin American job markets with low-skilled Venezuelans desperate for work in order to send money back to their convulsed homeland. — Reuters

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Venezuela migrant faces robbery, cold, hunger on journey to Peru

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, August 21st, 2018


Venezuela migrant Johany Yoselin with her three children | REUTERS


The already difficult journey of one Venezuelan woman fleeing her home country just got a whole lot worse.

Twenty-eight-year-old Johany Yoselin, a former candy vendor, left Venezuela with her three young children, hoping to pass through Ecuador and resettle in Peru. But as she entered Ecuador on Monday (August 20), a tough situation became tougher when someone stole her luggage.

They left her with one small backpack and identification documents for her and her children. But Yoselin has nothing else and doesn’t know what to do next.

The robbery compounds difficulties Yoselin was already facing when, over the weekend, Ecuador put in passport controls on Venezuelans trying to enter the country.

She said she lost contact with the children’s father and is now struggling to keep her family warm on the streets amid frigid temperatures.

Yoselin is one of the hundreds of Venezuelans caught in similar situations.

Over the weekend, hundreds of desperate people who traveled days from Venezuela were prevented from passing the checkpoint near the southwestern town of Ipiales by a regulation set by Ecuador’s President Lenin Moreno that kicked in on Saturday.

More than a million Venezuelan migrants have entered Colombia over the last 15 months, according to official estimates, but Ecuador, Peru, and Brazil also have received many.

Over the last two years, especially, many Venezuelans have struggled to obtain passports amid the OPEC nation’s political and economic chaos.

This year alone, 423,000 Venezuelans have entered Ecuador through the Rumichaca border. — Reuters

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139 victims of human smuggling on board a cruise ship rescued in Bataan

by UNTV News and Rescue   |   Posted on Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018

Authorities round up the rescued undocumented passengers of  a cruise ship bound for Micronesia. (Photo courtesy of: Philippine Coast Guard)


MANILA, Philippines – A joint anti-smuggling operations by members of the National Coast Watch Center (NCWC) together with the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) and the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) rescued 139 victims of human smuggling on board a cruise ship bound for Micronesia at 1:00 am, Tuesday (July 3).

In a press release, the PCG said the operations team apprehended a 5,746 gross-tonne old cruise ship registered as “M/V Forever Lucky” with 41 crew members on board after the NCWC received information from its foreign counterpart that a vessel of interest docked in Orion, Bataan was allegedly involved in illegal activities specifically human smuggling.

According to NCWC Director Rear Admiral Joel Garcia, the NCWC flagged the information to the PCG and the NBI that the vessel was “preparing to depart the Philippines for Micronesia to transport undocumented number of Filipinos.”

The owner of the vessel, Farenheit Company Ltd., produced “falsified and fictitious Special Permit to Navigate, no Certificate of Public Convenience or franchise to legalize its operation, no manifest for the 139 passengers on board, and other documents,” according to the PCG.

The PCG said the investigation in ongoing to determine appropriate charges to be filed against the persons responsible behind the illegal activity. — Marje Pelayo


M/V Forever Lucky: The 5,746 gross-tonne old cruise ship that was used to smuggle 139 people  (Photo courtesy of: Philippine Coast Guard)




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