December 1, 2021—Guatemala City (Guatemala)—The Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, issued the following statement:
“I was pleased today to conclude a productive visit to Guatemala. As the current Chair of the Central America and Mexico Comprehensive Regional Protection and Solutions Framework (known as MIRPS) Support Platform, I represented Canada at the Annual Ministerial Meeting, where we discussed increased cooperation to manage the migration challenges in the region.
“I also had the opportunity to meet with United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, and high-level representatives from the United States and Central American countries.
“We discussed the plight of those forcibly displaced in the region, and reaffirmed Canada’s commitment to working with other states to strengthen the systems of protection, to promote safe and orderly migration, and to address the root causes that make people leave their homes—including crime, poverty and violence.
“I also visited several communities where I saw first-hand the complex realities of forced displacement of people, and the specific vulnerabilities of women and children. Their unique needs must be considered as we work with partners to develop targeted initiatives, as part of our overarching commitment to protect and empower women and girls everywhere.
“In my meetings with High Commissioner Grandi, we discussed Canada’s collaboration with the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on pressing international refugee protection issues, and how the MIRPS Support Platform could best assist. We also discussed the importance of Canada’s partnership with the UNHCR with regard to Afghanistan and resettlement more broadly, and the need to expand complementary pathways for refugees, including through economic programs.
“Effectively responding to the challenges in the region requires a broad group of stakeholders and partners working together. Through this kind of dynamic regional approach, we can build on the response to date, protect the most vulnerable, and better support the communities who so generously host them.
“In closing, I would like to sincerely thank the Government of Guatemala for the warm hospitality extended to me and other MIRPS delegates during our visit.”
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Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship
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