'They will not vanish': Doctors without Borders lauds UN's migration pact
Published Thursday, December 20, 2018 9:59PM EST
Last Updated Friday, December 21, 2018 8:27AM EST
This week marked International Migrants Day – and concern remains that too many people perceive migrants as a threat.
About 70 million people were forcibly displaced from their homes in 2017 to escape violence and persecution.
The issue necessitates a humanitarian response and approach, said Dr. Joanne Liu, the international president of Doctors without Borders.
To that end, the UN members’ nations voted Wednesday on a global migration pact, ensuring the rights of migrants and offers protections for those who intervene across borders for humanitarian reasons.
The pact lays a non-legally-binding groundwork for how nation-states should respond.
It was ratified by 164 nations -- but not the United States. Canadian Conservative leader Andrew Scheer also spoke out against it as a threat to sovereignty.
Dr. Liu spoke with CTV Montreal about the issue, and said she feels the tone is often set by disinformation.
“I think we should focus on the 152 nations that yesterday endorsed the pact. Yes, 12 of them had an abstention and five of them really refused it, but 152 nations said yes to it,” she said. “Migration is a reality. It needs to be safe, it needs to be organized, it needs to be regular. That’s what it’s saying. So that’s really important, because it will not vanish. There are 67 million people who are forcibly in displacement. They will not vanish, they are there.”
Watch Dr. Liu’s interview above.