International DevelopmentTravel

Algeria repatriates illegal Nigerien immigrants

North Africa 1 (Globe Afrique) — Algeria deports Nigerien nationals staying illegally in the country, the country foreign ministry confirmed Tuesday.

A foreign ministry spokesman, Abdelaziz Benali Cherif, said that the exercise is conducted to address the occurrence of illegal immigration in Algeria and as a move to fighting human trafficking networks.

He indicated that the operation is part of the North African nation’s procedures to strengthen cooperation with the countries of sub-Saharan Africa, notably Niger and Mali, to curb the mounting waves of illegal migration.

Government sources say the Algerian Red Crescent is involved in the process. The foreign ministry spokesman said the process will ensure that the operation respects for the dignity and human rights of the deportees.

Algeria, in 2014, commenced repatriating thousands of migrants to their country of origin at the request of the Niger government, but several others managed to stay in the North African nation for better living conditions, and a majority of them has been trying to reach Europe by way of risky travels.

In early July, a U.S. report classified Algeria in “TIER 3,” saying the North African nation “is a transit and, to a lesser extent, destination and source country for women subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking, and men subjected to forced labor.”

Algeria denied the US allegations mentioned in what they termed as a “far from the reality” report, saying human trafficking scourge does not exist in the country.

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Paul Stevens

Paul Stevens is a researcher, media issues analyst and senior contributor with Globe Afrique.

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