World
EU-Africa summit agrees plan to stop migration tragediesPublish Date: Apr 03, 2014
EU-Africa summit agrees plan to stop migration tragedies
  • mail
  • img
(L-R) President of Mali Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, President of Burkina Faso Blaise Compaore, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, President of Mauritania Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz and President of Niger Mahamdou Issoufou pose prior to a meeting on the second day of the summit at the EU Headquarters in Brussels. AFP Photo
newvision

EU and African leaders trying to stop migrants from crossing the Mediterranean in perilous conditions unveiled a raft of measures on Thursday designed to boost development and crack down on human trafficking.

A huge summit bringing together some 80 leaders from the two continents touched on security, business and climate change, with sideline talks on the violence-hit Central African Republic.

There were so many delegates in town that the summit caused two days of traffic snarls in Brussels.

After tragic scenes of migrants storming fences in Spain and drownings off the Italian island of Lampedusa, delegates drew up a detailed plan to boost legal immigration while trying to dissuade Africans from trying to reach Europe illegally.

"If we concentrate on improving the skills of our people, investing in them, they will not have to come through Lampedusa," said Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, head of the African Union Commission.

"They'll come through the airports and the ports and they will be welcome," she said.

In the plan, the first of its kind, the two blocs commit to putting their resources together to normalise migration, with a focus on development and education on the one hand, and tightening borders and fighting traffickers on the other.

A joint statement said the EU and AU would "upscale efforts in combating trafficking in human beings" and "fight irregular migration".

Immigration charities estimate between 17,000 and 20,000 migrants have died at sea while trying to reach Europe in the past 20 years, but fighting the phenomenon from both Africa and Europe has proved difficult.

Delegates failed to reach an agreement on migration at the last Africa-EU summit in 2010 -- an unusual affair hosted in Moamer Kadhafi's Libya -- with Africans reluctant to impose tighter controls at their shores.

European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said the agreement was a "real breakthrough, a very important declaration".

In one of the worst ever Mediterranean migrant tragedies, a boat overloaded with refugees, mostly from strife-torn Somalia and Eritrea, caught fire and capsized last October off the island of Lampedusa.

Some 366 people lost their lives, prompting calls for an overhaul of European migration and asylum policies.

AFP

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Pro-Kremlin media accuse West of assigning blame over jet
A chorus of Kremlin-friendly media declared on Monday that the truth about what happened to the Malaysian jet would likely never be found out, accusing the West of heaping the blame on Russia....
Kerry travels to Cairo calling for
US Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Cairo early Monday for crisis talks on Gaza, following President Barack Obama's call for an "immediate ceasefire" between Israelis and Palestinians....
UN calls for immediate truce as Gaza toll tops 500
The UN Security Council called for an "immediate ceasefire" as Israel pressed on with a blistering assault on Gaza on Monday taking the Palestinian death toll above 500....
China shuts meat factory supplying McDonald
Shanghai has shut a factory of US food provider OSI Group for selling out-of-date meat to restaurant giants including McDonald's and KFC....
A roller-skating instructor was due in court Monday over the alleged rape of a six-year-old student which sparked protests from outraged parents....
Looting in Paris as Europeans protest against Gaza conflict
A French rally against the deadly Israeli offensive in Gaza once again descended into chaos Sunday as protesters looted shops...
With the recent increase of the HIV prevelance rate, Is Uganda losing the fight against the disease?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter