The EU and the International Organization for Migration have launched a joint initiative to make migration routes safer and to provide help for people returning to their countries of origin. Germany is contributing 48 million euros to support the initiative.
Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, the Gambia, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire and Libya are partner countries in the joint EU‑IOM initiative to make migration routes safer, particularly in the Mediterranean region, and to help people returning to their countries of origin.
German contribution: 48 million euros
The initiative is being funded by the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa. A total of 100 million euros is to flow into the programme over the next few years. Germany intends to contribute 48 million euros. Commenting on the initiative, Foreign Minister Steinmeier said that, just as the root causes of migration cannot be coped with by any country alone, we have to try to manage migration better on a European and global level.
The migration flows in the region are complex; various groups are fleeing for various reasons – workers as well as unaccompanied minors and people seeking refuge. No matter what the migrants’ status is, danger lurks along the migration routes, particularly in the form of people‑smuggling networks.
Federal Minister Steinmeier said the initiative’s top priority was to prevent people from taking extremely dangerous refugee routes and to provide protection and aid for those fleeing. The aim was to support countries of origin and transit, especially in West Africa and the Sahel region, in creating credible perspectives for refugees to remain in their countries or to voluntarily return.
Migration centres as sources of information and support
In order to meet these challenges, the initiative sets various priorities for the next three years. On the one hand, migration centres are to be set up along the main migration routes to provide migrants with information and support. As well as providing basic foodstuffs, the centres are also to offer medical and psycho‑social care. At the same time, these centres are intended to provide better access to information, for instance about target countries, and they are also supposed to help people trace family members. In addition, the centres are to help people voluntarily returning to their countries of origin. Reintegration in the countries of origin is also to be a focus.
The migration centres also hope to collect data on refugee numbers and the types of refugee flows in order to reach a better understanding of the causes of displacement and the reasons for migration and thus to adjust the political responses.