IWA is proud to be here at this historic 4th assembly of the first global alliance of migrants, refugees, displaced people and families as you organize to speak with one voice about the changes migrants need and the strategies to reach these.

Issues of migration are an important concern of our women’s alliance,  a sister organization of IMA. Forced migration affects women in particular – as they are forced to go abroad to allow their families to survive, working as domestics, farmhands, service workers, or staying behind to care for families, children, torn apart by migration. Women are the main victims of sex trafficking, a huge business, and of ongoing violence from organized crime and the governments that aid and abet it.

Women are also the justice-seekers for the missing and disappeared loved ones, as we’ve seen here in Mexico where the Mothers of the disappeared migrants have come from around the world, organized and determined to  obtain justice for their loved ones.

This assembly is historic because it is taking place in Mexico, which is a source country, a destination country, and a country of transit of migrants. The caravan of thousands of migrants that began in Honduras and is arriving in Mexico is a dramatic example of the forced migration we are witnessing on a massive scale around the world. The migrants are escaping hunger, joblessness, poverty bequeathed by foreign control of their economy, by neoliberal policies favoring business interests rather than people’s interests, and foreign interference in their own government and politics, affecting their ability to govern themselves.

This forced migration is a testimony to the Crisis of the imperialist system in the world.

Our member organizations are also composed of women who are also fighting in their home countries for fundamental change, against extractivist projects by transnational corporations, against landgrabbing and environmental destruction, against contractualisation, fighting for decent jobs, sustainable, people-centered development.

Now it is more necessary than ever to unite our struggles as women, as migrants, as dreamers and as builders of a new world; the time to unite and support our struggles for the liberation of our home countries and peoples, and for the emancipation of women everywhere. Organize, mobilize and fight with all our might for a world based on solidarity, mutual benefit and the full enjoyment of nature, life and humanity.

We wish you fruitful discussions and debates over the next two days.

Long live the migrant workers and their organizations!

Long live the people’s struggle for liberation and the women’s struggle for emancipation!

5 November 2018, Mexico


Published by IWA Secretariat

IWA Secretariat is based in the Netherlands. For info, write to

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