AVRR Information Campaign in Crete
With the active participation of the local community, the institutions and the authorities of Heraklion and Chania cities in the island of Crete, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) implemented two information events in the framework of the project "The Implementation of Assisted Voluntary Returns including Reintegration measures" (AVRR).
The meetings were focused on migration and the approach and management of the Assisted Voluntary Returns, with Daniel Esdras, Special Envoy of the IOM Director General of the Greek Government and Advisor of the Regional Director in matters concerning the Mediterranean area, underlining the voluntary basis of every return, while the assistance provided to each third-country national is personalized and tailored made to the needs of every beneficiary.
The "present" on behalf of the Governor was given by Tzanetos Filippakos, General Secretary of Coordination of the Ministry of the Interior, who was honored for his significant contribution to IOM. "From the beginning of 2018, the programme has assisted more than 2,000 third-country nationals to return to their country of origins and continue their lives there, make a fresh start; an evidence that shows that the programme has a response," he said.
The Mayor of Chania, Tasos Vamvoukas, noted that "We need to think about the responsibilities of the whole country in the partitioning of the refugee population as well as the humanitarian side of the issue". More than 100 people participated in the events, where the main achievements and results of the AVRR programme were presented, while the finding of a suitable area for accommodating refugees and migrants in Crete was also on the table.
According to IOM, the United Nations Migration Agency, 10,978 third-country nationals have returned to their countries from June 2016 to May 2018. Among these returnees, 3,132 have received personalized reintegration plans. Overall, in the context of return programmes implemented by IOM from the beginning of 2010 to May 2018, more than 42,500 third-country nationals have voluntarily returned to their home country.
The programme "The implementation assisted voluntary returns including reintegration measures” (AVRR) is co-funded 75% by the Asylum, Migration and Integration Fund of the European Union (AMIF) and 25% by the Hellenic Ministry of Interior.