Lead and collaborate to tackle mass displacement threats, Lord Loomba urges Government

Tuesday 11th January 2022 13:28 EST

Collaboration with international partners is the key to addressing the rising threats of mass displacement, Lord Loomba said in a House of Lords debate last week. 


“Around a quarter of a million people are currently displaced within Myanmar,” he pointed out. In Afghanistan, the figure is 665,000, 80% of them women and children, and those displaced due to climate change since 2010,  according to the UN, number more than 20 million. It is important, Lord Loomba said, to focus not only at the  consequences, but “to look at the causes too, and to consider what we in Britain can do to address them.” 


Identifying climate change as a growing threat causing displacement, Lord Loomba praised the Government’s  leadership and collaborative approach as president of COP26 and added that the best way to tackle the causes  of displacement was to take a similar approach to deliver on the UN’s 17 


Sustainable Development Goals, which include climate action; peace, justice and strong institutions; eradicating poverty and hunger; and promoting education and gender equality. 


“Beyond that,” Lord Loomba added, “Britain is well-positioned to offer a leading contribution through science  and in the areas of economic empowerment and trade, education for girls, conflict resolution, sustainable cities  and communities, and supporting the many British businesses and NGOs in delivering aid and expertise around  the world.” 


Baroness Greengrass and Lord Loomba both highlighted the position of widows, and in particular, the plight of widows greatly exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. 


Foreign Office Minister Lord Goldsmith, on behalf of the Government, agreed that “climate change and environmental destruction are likely to become a bigger and bigger reason for the increasing movement of people in the coming years”. The Minister promised that the Government’s Afghan citizens resettlement scheme “will focus on the most vulnerable people, such as women and girls, and members of minority groups”. adding that “women must have a seat at the table” to achieve lasting peace.  


“We know,” Lord Goldsmith said, “that when women participate in peace processes, there is a 35% increase in  the probability of a peace agreement lasting at least 15 years. That is why the UK Government are leading  proponents of the women, peace and security agenda.”

comments powered by Disqus

to the free, weekly Asian Voice email newsletter