Summit Background

The UN General Assembly decided to convene a high-level plenary meeting on addressing large movements of refugees and migrants on the 19 September 2016 and requesting UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to prepare a report with recommendations on the issue. Find out more on the steps taken to build up to the Summit. 

September 2015: The Secretary-General held a meeting on Strengthening cooperation on migration and refugee movements in the perspective of the new development agenda during the high-level segment of the General Assembly

November 2015: The President of the General Assembly convened an informal meeting of the General Assembly to consider ways to advance a comprehensive response to the global humanitarian and refugee crisis with Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee David Miliband, Co-Chair of the High Level Panel of the SG on Humanitarian Financing and VP of the EU Commission Kristalina Georgieva, Under Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator Stephen O’Brien, UNDP Administrator Helen Clark and Special Envoy to the President of the World Bank Mahmoud Mohieldin. The informal dialogue was followed by a plenary session of the General Assembly on global awareness on irregular migration initiated by Turkey

December 2015: The General Assembly agreed on holding a meeting on addressing large movements of refugees and migrants on 19 September 2016

January 2016: The Secretary-General appointed a Special Adviser, Karen AbuZayd, to work with United Nations entities and undertake consultations with Member States and other relevant stakeholders in the lead up to the Summit, including oversight of the Secretary-General’s report on large movements of refugees and migrants

February 2016: The President of the General Assembly appointed H.E. Mrs. Dina Kawar, Permanent Representative of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan and H.E. Mr. David Donoghue, Permanent Representative of Ireland as co-facilitators to lead open, transparent and inclusive consultations with Member States to finalise the organisational arrangements, including on a possible outcome, for the high level summit in September

May 2016: Secretary-General’s report on large movements of refugees and migrants submitted to the General Assembly

June 2016: Multi-stakeholder Hearing held at UN Headquarters to seek input from stakeholders to the possible outcome. Four panels are held with balanced representation from around the world from civil society, the private sector, and others

August 2016: In intergovernmental negotians a draft declaration for the September meeting was agreed on