The Committee’s full June session agenda included debates in plenary on “refugees at risk in Greece” and on “violence against migrants” and a joint hearing with the Equality Committee on “Discrimination against women refugees” with the participation of UNHCR, Gynaecologists without Borders, a women’s rights activist and a victim of gender-based violence. A declaration was adopted on 20 June to mark World Refugee Day and an exchange of views held with the recently-liberated Ukrainian parliamentarian and member of the Migration Committee Nadiia Savchenko in the framework of the follow-up to PACE Resolution 2112 (2016) on “The humanitarian concerns with regard to people captured during the war in Ukraine”.
During the summer, the Committee’s prominent rapporteurs Tineke Strik (Netherlands, SOC), Andrea Rigoni (Italy, ALDE) and Egidijus Vareikis (Lithuania, EPP/CD) participated respectively in a conference on Migration and Law at the Queen Mary University London, the Crans Montana Forum in Vienna and the UNHCR’s City of Solidarity Forum in Mariupol, Ukraine. Mr Rigoni is currently preparing a report on migration as an opportunity for European development and Mr Vareikis is working on a new report on the Humanitarian consequences of the conflict in Ukraine.
The introductory memoranda to these reports will be presented to the Committee at a meeting on 22 September at the Council of Europe’s Paris offices, where reports on the impact of European population dynamics on migration policies and on protection unaccompanied refugee children will also be presented, for adoption. The latter report will be the basis for an exchange of views with Europol during the meeting.
Other reports currently under preparation include the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, ways to improve emergency refugee situations funding, integration of refugees in times of critical pressure, the humanitarian needs of internally displaced persons and a report to follow up the December 2015 conference at the Paris Assemblée nationale on a comprehensive political and humanitarian response to the migration and refugee crisis in Europe.
The high-level Conference of Speakers and Presidents of Parliaments, organised by PACE every two years, will be hosted this year in Strasbourg on 15-16 September. The first of the three themes of the conference will be the role and responsibilities of parliaments in the Migration and refugee crisis in Europe, and discussions and conclusions will certainly provide orientations for the Committee’s future work.
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