UN report looks at migration flows between Iraq and Europe

UNITED NATIONS – Valerie Parker – A new report examining the migration flows between Iraq and Europe and the reasons behind it, has been released by the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

The findings revealed that the main reasons cited for emigration from Iraq were lack of security, perceived lack of equality and social justice and political instability. Economic stability was considered secondary to security concerns.

Many of the participants selected a country of destination based on the presence of friends or relatives, or the ease of obtaining residency permits.

However, many migrants report that life in Europe had been idealized and that the reality was more difficult.

The report is the second phase of a research project funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID). The first phase was a quantitative study based on nearly 500 interviews, which was released in February 2016: “Migration Flows from Iraq to Europe”.

IOM Iraq Chief of Mission Thomas Lothar Weiss said “Nearly 85,000 Iraqis arrived to Greece by sea in the second half of 2015 alone. A deeper understanding of the dynamics and driving factors behind the difficult decision Iraqi migrants made to leave home is crucial to better address their needs in Iraq, as well as in transit and receiving countries. Through this study, IOM aims to provide a comprehensive migration management response, in cooperation with the host governments in Europe and the Government of Iraq.”

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