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Gaddafi On Emigration

Nov 3, 2009, 2:02 PM

The Libyan leader and current AU Chairman, Moummar Gaddafi in a letter addressed to the European Union (EU) warned against the scourges of illegal migration and its devastating effects if measures are not put in place to address the situation.

The Libyan leader warned against the danger of the scale of the phenomenon and its negative impacts on AU countries and African-European relations.

Gaddafi reaffirmed that immigration, despite its consequences remains a phenomenon of ongoing human movement because of natural human demands.

This is true because many young people embark on this dangerous journey, simply because they want to have a greener pasture.

He stressed that the European summit was being held at a time when the dangers posed by this phenomenon is at its highest peak.

The issue if not popularly handled can indeed provoke ill-feeling between EU countries and their African counterparts.

We urge the AU Chairman to use his influence to address this problem of illegal migration and emigration.

Deporting African immigrants cannot solve the problem but helping African countries to reduce poverty, and thus create employment for its young people.

Over the years several young people, in particular from Africa lose their lives as a result of illegal migration to Europe. Several others were also deported to their native countries or jailed in Europe just for entering the territory.

We call on the EU to ponder over the issue in the interest of the EU- African relations.

Gaddafi is also correct when he said "There exists no difference between the refugee who is faced by his difficulty in living conditions to live in another country and criminals who are protected by political asylum."

The EU should consider this point of the AU Chairman because if they can grant asylum to political 'criminals' some of whom do commit serious offences in their home countries, what about those who are forced by hunger, unemployment and poverty?

We also advise all African countries where illegal immigrants often take their routes, including Libya to protect the rights of their immigrants as charity begins at home.

Mass deportation of immigrants from Europe to Africa is alarming and a cause for concern. While we are not in anyway encouraging illegal migration, we urge our fellow African brothers and sisters to be given fair treatment when they reach Europe.

AU leaders must be seen doing more to address this serious problem and we applaud the AU Chair for the bold step he has taken.

In fact, the EU and AU are partners in development, and as a result we encourage the two parties to be more practical in dealing with the movement of people between the two territories.