U.S. Delegation to the UNHCR Commemorations Ministerial and the 100th IOM Council

Media Note
Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
December 2, 2011

Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Population, Refugees, and Migration David Robinson will serve as Head of the U.S. Delegation to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Commemorations Ministerial to be held in Geneva on December 7-8, 2011.

This meeting of all member states of the United Nations is the culminating event of the year marking the 60th anniversary of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the 50th anniversary of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. Member States will deliver pledges of concrete commitments to improve protection and assistance for refugees, stateless persons, and other persons of concern.

As UNHCR’s largest single donor, the United States strongly supports UNHCR’s efforts to ensure international protection of these most vulnerable people around the world and will announce a comprehensive set of pledges that aim to address their needs.

Ambassador Robinson will also head the U.S. Delegation to the high-level session of the 100th International Organization for Migration (IOM) Council commemorating IOM’s 60th anniversary on December 5-7, 2011 in Geneva.

Delegates from IOM member states will discuss migration issues and recommendations for the future work of the Organization. IOM is a strategic partner in advancing the United States’ goals of legal, orderly, and humane migration.

The international community created UNHCR and IOM to address the needs of thousands of displaced Europeans after World War II. UNHCR’s mandate has grown, with the organization now helping 33.9 million people of concern in 123 countries. With more than 2,900 programs in over 400 locations worldwide, IOM provides humanitarian assistance to migrants in need, as well as advice and expertise to governments to promote humane and orderly migration.

PRN: 2011/2047