Algeria has repatriated 27,000 African migrants since 2015 -minister

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African migrants wait in line for the opening of the Population and Immigration Authority office in Bnei Brak, Israel February 4, 2018. Picture taken February 4, 2018. REUTERS/Nir Elias

ALGIERS, March 22 – Algeria has repatriated 27,000 sub-Saharan African migrants since 2015 and will continue to send them back to their home countries despite criticism from rights groups, interior minister Nouredine Bedoui said on Thursday.

Algeria is both a destination and a country of transit for African migrants seeking economic opportunities and fleeing poverty, repression and instability.

Those who stay in Algeria mostly come from Mali, Niger, Burkina Faso or Chad and many find work on construction sites.

Some travel through Algeria to neighbouring Morocco or to Libya, which remains the main departure point for migrants trying to reach Europe by sea.

“We have already repatriated 27,000 illegal African migrants to their countries since 2015,” Bedoui told parliament in Algiers, giving a rare official figure for the number of people sent home.

“The operation of repatriation is still ongoing.”

Bedoui said Algerian authorities had disbanded several groups involved in migrant smuggling, but warned that such networks were still active.

Activist groups including Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International have sharply criticised the repatriation of migrants by Algeria.

Last month HRW said Algeria was rounding up and deporting migrants “in a degrading way” without giving them a chance to have their cases individually reviewed.

Reporting by Lamine Chikhi Editing by Aidan Lewis, Toni Reinhold

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Godwin Okafor is a financial journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and the Founder Naija247news Media Ltd He has over 16 experiences in journalism, which cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career in Business Day, Where he was a senior editorial graphic artist, before he left to start Naija247news, An Online Financial Newspaper in 2010. He has won series of awards and he is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.com and also sits on the board of Students In Business Awards, (SIBA).

1 COMMENT

  1. Hammar friest of all the Algerians are not good upon all the difficult jobs the blacks don for them the turn against dem treat them as they fill if u want to deport someone take him back to his country bet really this people are not God fearing with all we call them muslims they are not God fearing

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