UN calls on member states to ratify 1990 convention on migrant rights

Western states have refused to endorse treaty

17th December 2010: Commemorating International Migrants Day, the United Nations will call on member states to endorse the 1990 international convention aimed at protecting the rights of migrants worldwide.


The call comes at a time of rising racial intolerance and growing anti- immigrant trends in Western Europe.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s appeal aims at Western states, home to over 215 million migrants. The states have so far refused to confirm treaty obligating these countries to provide security and protection to migrant workers.

The treaty came into legal force with 20 ratifications in July 2003. It has so far been ratified mostly by countries providing migrant workers, including Egypt, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Turkey, Ghana, Mexico, Algeria and Morocco.


The Western nations, on the other hand, have ducked away from the treaty. These include countries with large migrant populations like Britain, the United States, France, Germany and Italy.

In advance of International Migrants Day on December 18, the Secretary-General said irregular situation of many international migrants should not deprive them either of their humanity or their rights.

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