- If you stand up for the rights of migrants and refugees it will not weaken you as countries. It will make you stronger. We cannot and must not turn a migration crisis into a crisis of global solidarity. We must stand firm against racism and hatred. This is the key message that I carry from the Secretary-General, said Under-Secretary-General of the UN Christian Friis bach to the Nordic ministers and parliamentarians gathered in Reykjavik.
Mr. Friis Bach also stressed the importance of strong international cooperation and coordination, especially at the regional level.
Show humanity and protect human rights
- The Nordic countries have throughout the seventy years of the United Nations been among the strongest proponents of human rights. This position has earned you deep respect in the entire world. I strongly urge you not to risk throwing away your historic position in a migration and refugee crisis that you can handle, that you can manage, if you work together. Instead, I urge you to show humanity and protect the human rights of all refugees and migrants, regardless of their status.We cannot and must not turn a migration crisis into a crisis of global solidarity. We must stand firm against racism and hatred.
A strong Nordic voice is needed
The Under-Secretary-General of the UN stressed the need for a strong Nordic voice.
- The Nordic countries could support more comprehensive approaches to the handling and resolution of refugee situations, premised on strong international cooperation and coordination, especially at the regional level. No single country, acting alone, can hope to effectively grapple with the challenges and opportunities posed by human mobility in this globalized world.
The UN believes in a strong and unwavering dedication to save lives, and Mr. Friis Bach urged the assembly to ensure the protection of refugees and migrants and their human rights and the right of refugees to seek asylum.
- We must apply the principle of non-discrimination to both refugees and migrants, treating them with dignity and respect. We must join forces to eradicate ruthless criminal networks of human traffickers and smugglers. And most importantly, we most strengthen cooperation between countries of origin, transit and destination and commit to equitable sharing of responsibilities, concluded the Under-Secretary-General of the UN Christian Friis Bach.
Christian Friis Bach comments on the refugee and migration crisis during the Nordic Council Session in Reykjavik: