IOM, EU, Jordan launch EUR5.28 million border management project

The United Nations Migration Agency, IOM, the European Union, EU, and the Jordanian Armed Forces have launched a project to support border management in Jordan.

The project, funded by the EU Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace, will support Jordanian authorities in improving security and facilitating humanitarian assistance in the country’s north-eastern border with Syria.

Jordan plays a key role in enforcing and maintaining security in the region, and its border with Syria is 378 kilometres in length, which is mostly desert and rough terrain. The crisis in Syria has increased the pressure on the infrastructure and human resources of its border area, especially considering the generosity of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in receiving refugees and facilitating humanitarian assistance across the border to Syrians in need.

Since 2013 and through EU support, the IOM has deployed 82 vehicles to transport Syrian refugees from the border while giving preference to vulnerable cases, including those requiring medical attention.

Through this new EU-funded project, the IOM will provide technical support to Jordanian border authorities, by establishing border posts and enabling them to quickly respond to humanitarian challenges and security incidents in the country’s north-eastern border with Syria. Capacity building sessions, further training and roundtable discussions will also be organised to tackle immediate and long-term concerns and challenges resulting from the crisis. The project will also fund a series of roundtable discussions, to support the debate in Jordan on the international Global Compact on Migration and the related national consultation.

“The EU is committed to supporting the Jordanian Armed Forces, to provide humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people at the Berm while maintaining their primary task of protecting the borders of Jordan,” said Andrea Fontana, EU Ambassador to Jordan.

“Jordan’s partnership with the EU and the IOM has proved to be instrumental in sustaining the humanitarian role of the Jordanian Armed Forces while helping to provide assistance to Syrians across the border. As the Jordanian Armed Forces appreciate the IOM’s support, we look forward to continuing and enhancing our co-operation with both the EU and UN organisations, to alleviate some of the pressure on the infrastructure and human resources at our borders,” said Mahmoud Freihat, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

“The balance between security and humanitarian assistance is a priority and necessity,” said Enrico Ponziani, Chief of Mission of the IOM in Jordan.

“Since the start of the Syrian crisis, the EU and the IOM have partnered together to support the Government of Jordan in maintaining international humanitarian standards related to border management. This new EU funding is essential to continuing the fruitful co-operation that was established throughout these years,” Ponziani added.