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Moldova and Ukraine commit to fully cover basic needs of migrants in detention

26 March 2012

The successive handover of the responsibility of full coverage of migrants? basic needs in detention from international organizations to the Governments of Moldova and Ukraine is planned by 1 September 2012. The provision of legal assistance to detained migrants within the framework of the SIREADA* project will be upheld until February 2013.

Ukrainian and Moldovan migration management authorities renewed their commitment to ensure sustainability of best practices in migrant accommodation at the second SIREADA Regional Steering Committee in Chisinau, Moldova, on 20 March 2012.

Since 2005, IOM has been providing special assistance to irregular migrants detained in holding facilities for foreigners and stateless persons in Moldova and Ukraine, including supplementary food packages, medication, hygiene items, basic clothing, legal and interpretation/translation services, psychological consultation, and language courses within the framework of a number of the EU-funded projects including SIREADA. The Governments of Moldova and Ukraine, together with the EU and IOM, recognize that the operation of migrant detention facilities is the sole responsibility of the national migration management authorities. The special assistance component of the SIREADA project was designed as a temporary and transitional measure.

In agreement with the EU, IOM and the relevant government partners have developed the Phase-Out Strategy for Readmission Support which should lead to the development of transparent and durable Government-led assistance systems for the migrant holding facilities, in part through transferring compilations of best practices developed by IOM and other international organizations. The parties are working towards a smooth handover without reducing the quality of services provided to migrants in detention. International community endeavors to ensure that the national migration management authorities are able to design necessary legal acts and secure sufficient funding, under the State budget or through other sources, to fully cover these fundamental needs.

In Ukraine, achievements to date include the development and adoption of legal provisions for the coverage of basic needs of migrants in detention. Concomitantly, the Government agreed to a time plan for gradually decreasing external funding dedicated to the assistance in migrant holding facilities that is currently provided by the EU under SIREADA. In Moldova, the partners have developed a strategic document which puts this issue on the Government?s agenda to ensure sustainable ownership.

The parties support further efforts needed in the sphere of implementation of the Strategy in the respective countries within the time frame set out by the project.

* Support to the Implementation of EU Readmission Agreements with the Republic of Moldova, the Russian Federation and Ukraine: Facilitation of Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (SIREADA) is a project funded by the European Union and implemented by IOM since 1 March 2011 till 28 February 2013.

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