Ciné-ONU Vienna screens 'Amerika Square' to mark International Migrants Day

VIENNA, 18 December 2017 - This month's Ciné-ONU Vienna film screening and subsequent discussion focused on different aspects of migration and integration.

To mark International Migrants Day, the film "Amerika Square" was screened in cooperation with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the IOM Global Migration Film festival, This Human World film festival and Topkino. The screening was also organized in support of the Together Campaign, which promotes respect, dignity and security for refugees and migrants.  

The well-attended screening was followed by a panel discussion with Ilias Chatzis, Chief of the Human Trafficking and Migrant Smuggling Section at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC); Joe  Lowry, Senior Media and Communications Officer at the IOM Regional Office in Vienna; and  Andrea Grman, who is responsible for corporate social innovation at das Biber magazine, Vienna. The discussion was moderated by Martin Nesirky, Director of the United Nations Information Service (UNIS) Vienna.

The panellists agreed that the film was powerful and that it successfully showed the hardships and challenges that migrants encounter along their journeys. The engaged audience also made valuable contributions to the discussion through comments and questions.   

Joe Lowry from IOM thanked everybody for supporting the Global Migration Film Festival and mentioned that IOM holds similar events worldwide. Andrea Grman pointed out that for das Biber "migration and diversity means adding something", and that, through the magazine and other various activities at schools, they try to give young people with a migration background, a voice and a platform for expression. Ilias Chatzis gave insight into the UN Global Compact for Migration and the work of UNODC to combat human trafficking and migrant smuggling.

In their concluding remarks, the panellists reiterated that migration is a natural phenomenon that has many positive effects on host countries and that it is everyone's responsibility to fight hate and racism in all of their forms.