IOM and UNHCR Strengthen their Collaboration to Meet Growing Needs in West and Central Africa

Senior Representatives from UNHCR and IOM gathered in Dakar to discuss areas of collaboration ©UNHCR

Dakar – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) and UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, took steps to strengthen coordinated initiatives to respond to the needs of the people they serve in West and Central Africa. The regional teams from the two organizations met in Dakar on 15 November to identify key operational and strategic priorities related to mixed movements, solutions for IDPs and data management for the West and Central Africa region.

With skyrocketing numbers of forcibly displaced persons and migrants in West and Central Africa as a result of armed conflicts, political instability, economic crisis and effects of climate shock, UNHCR and IOM have committed to further increase their collaboration for a more efficient response to internal displacement and mixed movements, where refugees and migrants face similar protection risks such as trafficking and sexual violence.

"As a growing number of people in West and Central Africa are at risk and without options, we are joining forces to mount a better, stronger response to address the needs of the people we serve,” said Ms. Millicent Mutuli, UNHCR Director for West and Central Africa. “The routes and the needs are complex, and we must ensure our efforts are both joint and complementary to protect and assist people where they are.”

"We have set the stage by making decisions on key areas where we can continue to strengthen our collaboration for the benefit of people on the move. This is another positive step as we seek to reinforce efficiencies in the way we work together for greater impact in the region," said Christopher Gascon, IOM Regional Director for West and Central Africa.

In June 2022, the Director General of IOM and the High Commissioner for Refugees established the IOM/UNHCR Framework of Engagement. The framework draws on the New York Declaration for refugees and migrants, the Global Compact for Migration and the Global Compact on Refugees in December 2018. It also builds on the ever-increasing and valued positive experiences of collaboration between the two entities in various countries, regions and at Headquarters.

For more information please contact:

Halima Aminata Couro DJIGO IOM Regional Media and Communication Lead

Senan Rose Fidelia Bohissou UNHCR Senior Communications Associate