11 October 2016 – The Philippines reiterated its resolute commitment and solidarity with the international community in addressing the plight of refugees worldwide.

Ambassador Cecilia B. Rebong, Permanent Representative of the Philippine Mission to the United Nations and Other International Organizations, highlighted that the Philippines continues to do its share in finding solutions to address root causes of cross-border movements in general through the country’s advocacies and involvement in different fora.

“We will continue to do our share in finding solutions to address root causes of cross-border movements in general through our advocacies and involvement in different fora. For example, we continue to engage in the follow-up mechanism of the Nansen Initiative – the Platform on Disaster Displacement, where we join other Member States in working towards enhanced cooperation to improve the protection of disaster displaced persons,” said Ambassador Rebong.

“Working with the United States, IOM and other partners, we have developed the Guidelines on Migrants in Countries in Crisis (MICIC) to address longer-term consequences of migrants caught in countries experiencing conflicts or natural disasters,” she added.

The Philippines will also continue its sustained support for the Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM), despite the difficult human and financial challenges facing the Philippines in terms of attending to thousands of displaced by typhoons and other calamities that hit the Philippines annually.

The ETM, a cooperation arrangement with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the International Organization for Migration, provides for the immediate evacuation of refugees who are at risk of refoulement and persecution from their countries of origin.

In addition, she also highlighted the contributions made by the Filipino people, individually or as members of non-governmental organizations (NGOs), foundations and the business sector, in responding generously to the UNHCR’s appeal for resources to meet the extraordinary refugee-related challenges.

The Philippines also welcomed the Political Declaration of the High Level Summit on Large Movements of Refugees and Migrants and its Annexes – the “Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework” and the  “Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration” – adopted at the Summit last 19 September in New York.

Ambassador Rebong delivered the statement during the 67th Session of the Executive Committee of the High Commissioner’s Program held from 03 to 06 October at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland.

Ambassador Rebong is currently the Vice-Chairperson, representing the Asia-Pacific and Middle East Group, of the UNHCR Executive Committee Bureau.

The Executive Committee of the UNHCR meets in Geneva annually to review and approve the agency’s programmes and budget, advise on international protection and discuss a range of other issues with UNHCR and our intergovernmental and non-governmental partners.

Philippine Embassy Philippines