Morocco, a “key partner” in the fight against irregular immigration

Morocco, a “key partner” in the fight against irregular immigration

Morocco is a “key partner” of the European Union (EU) in the fight against irregular immigration, said the European Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson.

The European Commission presented, on Tuesday in Brussels, an action plan to reduce migratory pressure on the routes of the Western Mediterranean and the Atlantic, based on a solid partnership with Morocco.

On this occasion, Commissioner Ylva Johansson, a socialist from Sweden, pointed out that the arrival of irregular migrants on the Atlantic route to the Canary Islands had skyrocketed in 2020 and 2021, but decreased significantly in 2022 by 31. % compared to 2021 and 2023 thanks to the various EU partners, including Morocco. ” The situation is now under control“, she indicated.

It is thanks to the intensive efforts of the EU, the Commission, but above all the Spanish government and our key partner, Morocco, which is a very important partner for us in the common management of migration“said Johansson.

According to the commissioner, who thanked the Rabat government for its “constructive dialogue”, ” IEU and Morocco have a strong and reliable partnership on migration“. And to add: We want to support Morocco’s efforts to fight against immigrant smuggling and human trafficking“.

On the other hand, migratory flows continue, “which requires continuous vigilance and concrete operational responses. Despite the stability we need to put more effort into managing internal migration,” Johansson points out.

The new EU action plan on the Western Mediterranean and Atlantic migration routes sets four priorities, including combating human trafficking, strengthening border controls, facilitating the repatriation of irregular migrants and creating legal immigration channels. However, the document does not mention any funding, although Johansson assures that European funds will be available for all these priorities.

Furthermore, the EU aspires to implement an operational partnership against migrant smuggling with Morocco and will step up efforts to combat this scourge with other African partner countries along the route.

For border management, Brussels intends to strengthen the capacities of Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal and The Gambia to put in place concrete measures to prevent irregular departures. In addition, increased bilateral cooperation between the European Border and Coast Guard, Frontex, and these four African countries will be encouraged.

As for repatriation, the European Commission wants to increase the rate of voluntary return of migrants to partner countries, also with the help of Frontex.

With regard to legal pathways for migration, Ursula von der Leyen’s Commission urges the effective application of protection mechanisms in countries of origin and transit and calls for the promotion of legal pathways of protection within the EU through resettlement, humanitarian admission and complementary pathways, as well as the establishment of talent development programs, such as the one in force in Morocco. In addition, the EU will explore the feasibility of legal migration and mobility programs in partnership with Nigeria and Senegal.


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