As the leading international organization for migration issues, the International Organization for Migration – UN Migration (IOM) works with its partners in the Government of Tajikistan, local civil society, and the international community to: i) assist in meeting the growing operational challenges of migration management; ii) advance understanding of migration issues; iii) encourage social and economic development through migration; iv) uphold the human dignity and well-being of migrants.
IOM in Tajikistan
IOM began working in Tajikistan in 1993 during the Tajik Civil War, shortly after Tajikistan became an observer state of the IOM in the autumn of 1992. Operations during this time where mainly focused on humanitarian assistance to those affected by conflict; movements, return and resettlement for refugees and internally displaced persons; and reintegrating former combatants. With as many as 700 000 citizens displaced during the war IOM came to take on an important role in the country and Tajikistan soon requested to become a full member of the organization, which it officially did in November 1994.
Since this period, IOM has grown and expanded to all areas of the country across a wide range of thematic areas. IOM Tajikistan will continue to advocate that humane and orderly migration benefits migrants, society, and governments. As part of its mandate, IOM Tajikistan leads counter-trafficking in person efforts in the country, using a victims-centered approach, and raising public awareness on human trafficking to prevent exploitation and rights abuses. A full range of legal, information, and reintegration services are provided by IOM in Tajikistan, particularly to those migrants who are vulnerable or who have been exploited.
IOM Tajikistan is also working on issues of public health, particularly in relation to communicable diseases like tuberculosis and HIV with a focus on the health of migrant workers and their families. This includes working with health authorities and diaspora groups both in Tajikistan and the wider region. Another important priority is lending support to the Tajik Border Force in their efforts to strengthen border management, update best practices and regulations, and upgrade facilities at border crossings. This is done to help Tajikistan facilitate the legitimate crossing of goods and people whilst maintaining secure borders.
Creating more local opportunities for employment in Tajikistan would make it possible for more people considering leaving the country to stay and contribute to their own communities and allow them to be closer to their children and families. Work conducted by IOM in community stabilization is aimed at building safer and more prosperous communities through supporting small businesses, building community infrastructure, and providing vocational training. IOM also works with communities on both sides of the Tajik-Afghan border to increase trade, trust and social cohesion.