International Organization for Migration
Topic Area A: Countering Migrant Smuggling
In 2016, over 3,740 migrant lives were lost in the Mediterranean as migrants attempted to cross borders. Every one person out of 88 who attempted the journey passed away. These numbers and this disregard for human life are unprecedented and unacceptable. Migrant smuggling has plagued our interconnected world for decades, with smugglers acting without respect to migrant human rights while reaping the profits (often for transnational crime organizations) and disregarding state sovereignty.
Migrant smuggling has increased in the world in the past decade, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa. With this increase have come further violations of human rights and massive increases in spending money for transnational crime networks. Smugglers operate illegally, often as a part of these networks, and reap the benefits that then funnel back into other units of transnational crime.The increase in smuggling also presents challenges for the nation-state, as national borders are disregarded and state sovereignty is ignored.
The International Organization for Migration has been called upon to create safer processes for migrants seeking a better life, identify and prosecute smugglers, and reassure nations that their borders are being respected. How will you balance all three of these concerns? How will you respect the rights of fleeing migrants searching for a better life while respected state sovereignty? What new processes will you create?
Topic Area B: Promotion of Migrant Health