The Latest: UN migration meeting head slams 'misinformation'


MARRAKECH, Morocco (AP) — The Latest on migration issues (all times local):

8:55 p.m.

A group of some of the world’s richest countries says highly educated migrants have made up a growing proportion of people moving to nearly all its member states and European Union countries over the last decade.

Secretary-General Angel Gurria of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says, “much remains to be done to maximize the still untapped potential of migrants to contribute economically and socially to their recipient countries.”

The OECD released a report, “Settling in 2018: Indicators of Immigrant Integration” on the eve of a two-day U.N. conference on migration in Marrakech, Morocco, opening Monday.

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The report found that immigrants’ relative poverty is more widespread than a decade ago, and about one in seven foreign-born people in the EU reported facing discrimination based on their ethnicity, nationality or race.

OECD director for employment, labor and social affairs Stefano Scarpetta said about 5 million people enter OECD countries each year, amounting to 0.5 percent of the countries’ total population.


8:10 p.m.

The leader of a U.N. migration conference that has been snubbed by the Trump administration and at least seven other governments has lashed out at “misinformation” about an agreement on migration backed by about 150 countries.

Louise Arbour says she expects the Global Compact for Migration to “stand the test of time.” She defended the economic and humanitarian upsides of legal, safe migration and the contributions of around 258 million migrants worldwide today.

She told reporters: “It creates no right to migrate. It places no imposition on states … It is not legally binding.”

At least 100 ministers or government leaders are expected for the two-day conference opening Monday in Marrakech, Morocco, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Arbour said Australia, Austria, the Czech Republic, the Dominican Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Slovakia and the U.S. have “pulled out.”

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10:35 a.m.

As Morocco prepares to host the signing of a landmark global migration agreement, hundreds of migrants are languishing in a Casablanca camp rife with hunger, misery and unsanitary conditions.

These sub-Saharan Africans who dream of going to Europe are a symbol of the problems world dignitaries are trying to address with the U.N.’s first migration compact being finalized at a conference in Marrakech on Monday and Tuesday.

Rising numbers of migrants live in the makeshift camp on a soccer field near a busy Casablanca bus station. Scant food, lack of heat, no sanitation, lice and respiratory infections are the main worries at the Oulad Ziane camp.

Morocco is a major source of Europe’s migrants but is also a transit country and magnet for other Africans fleeing poverty.

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