Last year, 42,181 migrants, including 1,473 Bangladeshis, returned to their home countries with support from the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
The IOM on Friday released the key highlights from its Return and Reintegration programmes in 2020.
The top 10 countries of origin of the returnees are Mali, Guinea, Tajikistan, Iraq, Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Georgia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Sudan.
The IOM released the key highlights, such as trends, figures, initiatives, and efforts to assist and reintegrate migrants returning voluntarily to their countries of origin during the past year.
The border closures and mobility restrictions imposed by governments worldwide in response to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 posed unprecedented challenges to IOM's return and reintegration activities.
They resulted in a number of adaptations allowing the organisation to continue providing return and reintegration support to migrants.
In 2020, IOM assisted 42,181 migrants to return home voluntarily, including migrants who were stranded or in vulnerable situations – a decrease of 35% from 2019. Of them, 4,038 migrants were assisted to return from the humanitarian contexts of Libya and Yemen under IOM's Voluntary Humanitarian Return (VHR) programme, as well as 1,100 stranded migrants were assisted under the Covid-19 Return Task Force.
The European Economic Area remained the main host region in 2020 with 16,649 migrants assisted to return to their countries of origin.
Niger was the main host country with 9,069 migrants assisted to return, reconfirming the trend of increasing numbers of returns taking place from transit countries.
Of the roughly 42,000 migrants assisted, 40% returned within the same region in 2020. Migrants assisted to return within West and Central Africa alone accounted for 65% of such flows.
Despite fewer migrants assisted to return in 2020, IOM maintained a high level of reintegration support, with 121 country offices in host or transit countries and in countries of origin providing 106,230 reintegration services.