Nigeria, Gambia, Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire seriously affected
By Ada Anioji
Worried by the rising scourge of dangerous, illegal migration from Africa to Europe, concerned organisations are pushing harder to do something about it.
To give more bite to the process, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) will host an online press conference on Wednesday, March 15.
So far in 2017, 19,567 migrants arrived by sea to Italy and after the latest shipwreck this past weekend, 521 have died at sea – 50 more compared to the same period in 2016. The majority of these migrants are from Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Guinea, Senegal and Gambia – same as in 2016.
Some of the migrants who make it to Europe and share their ordeal with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reveal that their journey was far more dangerous than expected. Many are unaware of the dangers and risks of migrating with the assistance of smugglers, not only at sea or in the desert, but also in transit countries like Libya. Recalling the life-threatening risks along their journey is often very distressing and in many instances, most migrants wish to forget and move forward with their lives and therefore tend not to share their experience with peers who are still back home.
The Aware Migrants campaign aims to inform migrants from 15 countries – mostly in West Africa plus Tunisia and Egypt – about the dangers of migrating irregularly across the Sahara desert, Libya and the Mediterranean Sea.
The campaign is launched in the target countries of transit and origin in Africa with social media, TV and radio spots.
Flavio Di Giacomo and Shiraz Jerbi, IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean – the UN Migration Agency will host the online press conference.
President Adama Barrow of The Gambia