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2007 – Development of international partnerships, training, and research

By 2007, the issue of asylum seekers, including the problem of human trafficking, chiefly from Eastern Europe, had become increasingly prominent in public and political awareness in Israel.


CIMI worked with the relevant government ministries and ran a series of training courses for civil servants about communication with migrants, be they foreign workers (legal, mainly from Asian countries) or asylum seekers (mainly from Africa). The UNHCR recognized the importance of CIMI’s work and the two organizations developed a strong relationship that included the exchange of knowledge and budgetary assistance. A memorandum of understanding was signed between the organizations, based on the long-time relationship between JDC-Israel and the UNHCR office in Israel.


Training programs for officials in relevant positions were conducted in Israel and the migrants’ countries of origin, as well as in countries where women were being trafficked for prostitution. The ability to recognize human trafficking and victims of modern slavery was one of the focuses among the subjects covered. Thanks to funding from the EU, mechanisms to address all aspects of migration were incorporated in various government ministries. Subsequently, the Population and Immigration Authority (PIBA) was established as the main agency dealing with all migrant populations in Israel.


In an effort to professionalize in the field of international migration and integration, CIMI conducted research in partnership with PIBA and academic institutions, and this became a central focus of the organization’s activities. CIMI sought to develop a comprehensive database on immigration and integration policy and to disseminate the information, so as to produce informed discussion of important issues, as well as to develop programs and other activities based on the identification of needs.

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