IOM Member States endorse move to join United Nations

Geneva, 1 July 2016 – Member States of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), meeting at a Special Council in Geneva on 30th June, decided that IOM should join the United Nations system as a related organization.

IOM Director General William Swing will communicate the decision of IOM Member States to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. It is expected to enter into force, upon signature of the agreement, on 19 September during a UN Summit on Migrants and Refugees, after being submitted to the UN General Assembly for approval.

“Today has been a watershed moment in the life of this Organization, which is celebrating its 65th year,” said IOM Director General William‎ Lacy Swing. “Member States approved the motion by which IOM will join the United Nations system.”

“We expect to soon have a seat and a voice at the UN table and the UN will soon have a dedicated migration agency,” he added.

Sixty-five years ago in December 1951 IOM was founded out of the upheaval of World War II, when vast numbers of people were on the move to better their lives. IOM’s decision to join the UN system comes as more of the world’s people are on the move than ever before. One in every seven persons on the planet is now a migrant and 65 million of these are forced migrants and refugees.

Read more about IOM’s decision to join the UN system here.