Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, Zambia, Tanzania vowed to collaborate to curb illegal migration.
State Minister for Foreign Affairs Dewano Kedir met with the Ambassadors of the four countries on Dec. 19th to discuss on how the countries should cooperate to curb illegal migration and to share recent developments in the issue of migration.
“The State Minister [Dewano[ noted that Ethiopia has been conducting assessments about Ethiopian immigrants, the illegal routes and destination countries and found out that the need to devise collaborative mechanisms between African countries is crucial to minimize the damages related to illegal migrations of African citizens,” MoFA said in a statement.
These countries are the main routes used by human traffickers and illegal brokers. Thus State Minister Dewano said integrated tools and mechanisms and agreements in the areas such as boarder entries, VISA processing, immigrants handling and legal proceedings needs to be designed, agreed and implemented soon between the countries.
Recalling the recent ban on domestic workers into the Middle East countries, the state minister also said Ethiopia was finalizing drafting a new bill on employment of Ethiopians abroad. “Ethiopia has improved its immigration related cooperating with Sudan and Kenya as well as with countries like Zambia, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, and Tanzania ranging from improving VISA processing and combating Human traffickers to releasing immigrant prisoners to follow their court cases in their countries”.
Ambassador of Zambia to Ethiopia, Ms. Susan Sikanota, on her part said that her government encourages immigrations for development which can be seen in the context of African integration. But she noted that illegal migration should be tackled and collaboration between African countries through f the African Union and the ECA should be put in place to curb the problem.
Kenyan Ambassador to Ethiopia, Ambassador Katherine Mugai Mwangi, said the issue of illegal migration was “dire and cooperative mechanisms between the concerned countries should be designed and implemented to minimize it”. The Ambassadors expressed their agreements as the issue of illegal migration has become timely and needs an integrated response from the African countries, MoFA’s statement said.
Each year about 300, 000 African immigrants especially from Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia meet embark on perilous journeys only to meet dreadful ends both within and outside Africa after falling prey to organized human traffickers.
Cover photo: immigrants from African countries after arriving on the Canary island of Tenerife