On September 19, 2016 in UN Headquarters in New York during the United Nations Summit on Large Movements of Refugees and Migrants the International Organization for Migration, represented by its Director General Ambassador William Lacy Swing officially signed a document formally linking IOM to the United Nations. IOM from now on will join the UN as one of its related organizations, giving the United Nations, for the first time, an explicit, official migration mandate. After the official signing ceremony, Ambassador Swing mentioned: “The signature of this historic agreement brings the leading global migration agency, International Organization for Migration (IOM) – into the United Nations – the culmination of a 65-year relationship. For the very first time in 71 years, the UN now has a ‘UN Migration Agency’,”
The international Organization for Migration (IOM) was founded in 1951, in a period of chaos and displacement of Western Europe following the Second World War. The organization was initially called Provisional Intergovernmental Committee for the Movement of Migrants from Europe (PICMME). A succession of name changes from PICMME to the Intergovernmental Committee for European Migration (ICEM) in 1952, to the Intergovernmental Committee for Migration (ICM) in 1980 to the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in 1989, reflects the organization's transition over half a century from logistics agency to migration agency. Currently the Organization has 165 Member States and a further 8 states holding Observer status. IOM operates in over 100 countries worldwide. IOM is dedicated to promoting humane and orderly migration for the benefit of all. It does so by providing services and advice to governments and migrants.
The Republic of Armenia became an IOM Member State in 1993. IOM activities in the country are grounded on a number of official documents signed with the Armenian Government, including “Cooperation Agreement on Privileges and Immunities” (1994) and “Memorandum of Understanding” (2001). The IOM Mission was opened in Yerevan in 1993.