Category Archives: Algeria

Frontex 3rd Quarter Report

On 16 January the Frontex Risk Analysis Unit released its Report for the Third Quarter of 2010 (July-Sept.).  The report contains data, charts, and graphs detailing detections of migrants, asylum seekers, false document use, detections of facilitators, and other information.  The deployment of Frontex’s RABIT force to the Greek-Turkey border did not begin until 2 November 2010, so the effects of the RABIT deployment do not appear in the Third Quarter.

The Report notes that the “unprecedented peak in illegal border-crossings at the Greek land border with Turkey is the result of a shift from the sea to the land border” coupled with a “large increase in the absolute number of migrants” using Turkey as an EU entry point.  The Report states that there has been an eight-fold increase in the number Maghreb nationals detected at the Greek land border which “is thought to be the result of a displacement effect from the West Africa and Western Mediterranean routes.”

The Report also notes an increase in the number of detections on the Central and Western Mediterranean sea routes compared to Q2 which may be attributable to seasonal variations or “may be indicative of reorganized modi operandi in these areas in response to Frontex Joint Operations, more effective border controls and bilateral agreements implemented in 2008.”  See Figure 3 below.

Excerpts from the Report:

“Detections of illegal border-crossing”

“…  Fig. 2 [see below] shows quarterly detections at the land and sea borders of the EU since the beginning of 2008. The 30% increase in the number of detections between the previous and present quarters is comprised of a 60% increase at the sea borders (although from a lower base) and a 23% increase at the land borders. This means that the shift from sea to land borders has not continued to same extent as in the previous quarters.  Nevertheless in Q3 2010, there were some 29 000 detections of illegal border-crossing at the external land border of the EU, which constitutes 85% of all the detections at the EU level, and the highest number of detections at the land border since data collection began in early 2008….”

“Eastern Mediterranean route”

The Report observes that there has been a shift in illegal crossings from the Greece-Turkey maritime border to the Greece-Turkey land border and notes an increase in the number of nationals from Maghreb countries apprehended at the Greece-Turkey land border.  “This route [being taken by Maghreb nationals] is very indirect, but is thought to be the result of a displacement effect from the West Africa and Western Mediterranean routes….”

See Figure 4 below which shows that detections of illegal border crossers at the land border of Greece have exceeded detections at the sea border since Q1 of 2010.

“Central Mediterranean route”

“There were 2 157 detections of illegal border-crossing during Q3 2010. This is more than a three-fold increase compared to the previous quarter and a third higher than the same period last year. However despite this apparently large increase, detections still remain massively reduced compared to the peak of around 16 000 during the same period in 2008 (Fig. 3)….”

“The JO Hermes 2010 which was operational between June and October 2010, focused on illegal migratory flows departing from Algeria to the southern borders of the EU, specifically to Sardinia. In 2010, there were fewer detections than in previous years….”

“Departures from Libya also remained low. In June 2010, a new law was implemented to serve more severe punishments for facilitating illegal immigration. Ambassadors of the countries of origin were called into the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Tripoli to be informed about the consequences of the new law, which suggests that this may be a serious implementation.”

“Western Mediterranean route”

“In general, irregular immigration to southern Spain has decreased massively since the beginning of 2006. However, in Q3 2010 there were 2 200 detections of illegal border crossing in the Western Mediterranean, more than twice that of the previous quarter and around a third higher than the same period in 2009. There is growth in the number of detections of a wide range of African nationalities, nine of which more than doubled in number between Q2 and Q3 2010. The most detected nationalities were Algerian, Moroccan, Cameroonian and Guinean.”

“Western Africa route”

“The cooperation and bilateral agreements between Spain and the rest of the Western African countries (Mauritania, Senegal and Mali) are developing steadily, and are one of the main reasons for the decrease in arrivals, as is the presence of patrolling assets near the African coast.”

“According to data collected during JO Hera, the numbers of arrivals in the Canary Islands and detections in West Africa are very low compared to the same time last year. The main nationality and place of departure is from Morocco, to where migrants are returned within a few days.”

Click here for the 3rd Quarter 2010 Report.

Click here for the 2nd Quarter 2010 Report.

Click here for the 1st Quarter 2010 Report.

Click here for my previous post regarding the 2nd Quarter Report.

 

 

 

 

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Frontex 2010 1st Quarter Report: Irregular Migration at Sea Borders Less Than 10% of Peak Levels

Frontex has released information from its 2010 First Quarter report by the Frontex Risk Analysis Network (FRAN).  A copy of the report itself has apparently not been released.  According to the summary provided, there have been significant reductions in irregular migration:

  • “[D]etections of irregular immigrants at [all EU] sea borders … were less than one-tenth of the peak level (for the third quarter of 2008) when roughly 33,600 detections were reported.”
  • “[D]etections at the Spanish and Italian sea borders became negligible…”
  • “[D]etections at the dominant Eastern Aegean Sea border between Greece and Turkey also fell by more than 60% to just under 2,300.”
  • “Detections at the Greek-Turkish land border were for the first time greater than those at the countries’ sea border.”
  • There were “only 150 detections of illegal border-crossing [in the Central Mediterranean], compared to 5,200 detections in the first quarter of 2009…”
  • There were “only 500 irregular immigrants detected [in the Western Mediterranean] (almost 72% down on the fourth quarter of 2009 …).”
  • There were “only five detections over the first three months of 2010 [on the West African/Canary Island route], in contrast to 31,700 detections in 2006…”

Click here for full statement.

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UNODC Publication: Smuggling of Migrants into, through and from North Africa

UNODC has issued a new publication entitled “Smuggling of Migrants into, through and from North Africa: A thematic review and annotated bibliography of recent publications.”  Most of the reviewed literature and data are from 2008 and earlier dates and therefore the publication does not include references to more recent events, e.g. the Italy-Libya migration agreement.  But it is a comprehensive and useful publication.  The 16 page Annotated Bibliography is a very good resource.

According to the UNODC web site, the publication “focuses primarily on the patterns and dynamics of migrant smuggling, as it concerns the North African region. Recognizing, however, that irregular migration and smuggling flows are transnational in nature, the review goes beyond North Africa, to also cover sub- Saharan African and European countries affected along the various smuggling routes.  The aim of the review is twofold: to describe major findings on smuggling of migrants; into, through and from North Africa, and to highlight the need for further research on specific issues that have not yet been studied.”

Table of Contents:

  • I. Introduction
  • II. Quantifying irregular migration and smuggling of migrants
  • III. Migrant smuggling routes
  • IV. Profiles and characteristics of smuggled migrants
  • V. Smuggler-migrant relationships
  • VI. Organizational structures of migrant-smuggling networks
  • VII. Modus operandi of migrant smuggling
  • VIII. Smuggling fees
  • IX. The human and social costs of smuggling
  • X. Summary of findings
  • XI. Annotated bibliography

Click here for the publication.

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La Tribune (Algérie): La Libye met l’Union européenne au pied du mur

“L’Europe, l’obsession sécuritaire et l’immigration utilitaire – … Les négociations entre l’UE et la Libye semblent suggérer que les Européens sont prêts à aller très loin dans la volonté de faire des Etats du Sud les gendarmes luttant contre l’immigration clandestine. En effet, pour signer un accord d’association comprenant le volet immigration, la Libye exige la fermeture pure et simple du bureau du Haut-Commissariat aux réfugiés (HCR), en plus de moyens financiers supplémentaires et du matériel de surveillance des frontières terrestres et maritimes qui viendront s’ajouter aux nombreux dispositifs de contrôle déjà financés par l’UE dans ce pays depuis le début des années 2000. La politique européenne sur l’immigration inclut également l’ouverture sur le sol libyen de «points d’accueil», qui permettraient aux réfugiés de déposer leur demande d’asile sans prendre le risque d’une traversée de la Méditerranée. Le commissaire en charge des questions d’asile et d’immigration, Jacques Barrot, s’était rendu sur place pour étudier la possibilité d’un tel dispositif…..”

Cliquez ici pour télécharger l’article.

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Large Drop in Irregular Algerian Migrants Arriving in Italy in 2009

Italy’s Ambassador to Algeria, Giampaolo Cantini, held a press conference this week and said that the number of harragas, irregular migrants, who were found attempting to enter Italy from Algeria dropped from 1599 in 2008 to 804 in 2009.  The press coverage described the reduction as a 70% reduction, but given the cited numbers, it seems the drop is about 50%.  Cantini noted that not a single migrant departing Algeria for Italy has been detected since 30 April 2010.

Cantini attributed the reduction to the increased level of bilateral cooperation between Italy and Algeria on the migration issue and the increased surveillance of the Algerian coast by Algerian authorities.

Click here and here for articles (both FR).

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Details from Frontex General Report 2009 (Post 2 of 2)

Last week I posted a summary of the first part of Frontex’s 2009 General Report.  This second post summarizes the portion of the Report pertaining to Frontex’s sea operations.

The General Report 2009 provides selective information regarding the six major Joint Operations conducted at the sea borders.  With only one exception, no information or data is provided regarding the specific numbers of intercepted migrants or vessels.

Instead of numbers, the Report provides various descriptive terms which could mean almost anything.  For example, Operation Hera led to a “drastic decrease of migrants,” during Operation Nautilus there was a “remarkable decrease” in migrants, and during Operation Hermes, the numbers of migrants arriving and dying at sea “decreased dramatically.” The one exception is for Operation Indalo where the Report states that 750 irregular migrants and 10 facilitators were detected.

When desired, the Report provides details and numbers.  For example, Operation Poseidon utilized 4 open sea vessels, 6 coastal patrol vessels, 13 coastal patrol boats, six airplanes, 4 helicopters, and 152 experts who delivered 2680 man days of operational activities, but no data regarding the total number of irregular migrants intercepted at sea is provided.

Here is a summary of the information provided in the Report for each of the six major Joint Operations:

Poseidon 2009, Eastern Mediterranean (365 Days)

Poseidon was conducted along land borders as well as at sea.  Interpreters were deployed on board ships to facilitate the identification process of intercepted migrants.  Less than 10% of the interviewed migrants claimed their original nationality.  There was an overall reduction in migrant flow of 16% (land and sea) compared to 2008.  “The main operational objectives of the joint operation were achieved but there is a clear need for closer cooperation between local authorities.”

Hera 2009, Atlantic Ocean waters between North Western African countries and Canary Islands (365 Days)

Due to the permanent implementation of Joint Operation Hera and better cooperation from “involved African countries”, there was a notable reduction in migrants reaching the Canary Islands, 2280 in 2009 compared with 9200 in 2008.  Aerial and maritime surveillance conducted close to the territory of Senegal and Mauritania and local cooperation from police led to the decrease in migrants.  “Despite these clear successes, participation of more member States would greatly increase effectiveness and outcomes.”  [NF- While the Report does provide migrant arrival data for the Canary Islands, it is silent on the number of migrants intercepted at sea or within Senegal or Mauritania.]

Nautilus 2009, Central Mediterranean (172 Days)

There was a remarkable decrease in migrant arrivals in Malta.  A “significant obstacle to the effectiveness of the Joint Operation lay in the contrasting interpretations of the International Law of the Sea by Member States….”  The effectiveness of the operation compared with 2008 was not improved.

Hermes 2009, Central Mediterranean (184 Days)

“Due to the bilateral agreement between Italy and Libya, the number of people arriving from Libya, as well as the number of migrants died at sea, decreased dramatically….”  “In addition, the first examples of co-operation with Algeria should also be considered as promising.”  As with Nautilus, “differing interpretations of the International Law of the Sea led to a limited contribution by the Member States to the joint operation by maritime surface means.”  The effectiveness of the operation compared with 2008 can be considered as increased.

Minerva 2009, Western Mediterranean (39 Days)

The launch of the operation was delayed in 2009.  Its effectiveness compared with 2008 has remained the same.

Indalo 2009, Western Mediterranean (50 Days)

The lack of cooperation from Algeria is an obstacle for operational activities.  10 Facilitators and 750 irregular migrants were identified.

And as I noted in my earlier post, Frontex continued to devote the biggest single portion of its expenditures to maritime enforcement.  Almost 40% of Frontex’s total budget, over € 34 million, was spent on sea operations in 2009, constituting 55% of the operational budget.

This chart from the Report (p 23) shows the breakdown of expenditures within the 2009 Operational Budget (which was 71% of the total 2009 Frontex budget).

Click here for previous post.

Click here for the Frontex General Report 2009.

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UNHCR Research Paper: Les violences faites aux femmes pendant leur voyage clandestin: Algérie, France, Espagne, Maroc

Un nouveau rapport du HCR (UNHCR Research Paper) par Smaïn Laacher a été publié: “Les violences faites aux femmes  pendant leur voyage clandestin: Algérie, France, Espagne, Maroc.”

Extraits:

“L‟objet de notre mission a porté sur les violences faites aux femmes migrantes pendant leur voyage clandestin. Les femmes qui constituent la population de notre étude sont des femmes qui ont quitté illégalement leur pays et ont voyagé jusqu‟au Maroc, en Algérie, en Espagne, et en France. *** Les violences subies par les femmes pendant leur voyage clandestine … , dont la plus destructrice est la violence sexuelle, visent principalement des êtres sans défense, c‟est-à-dire des femmes qui n‟ont pu ou qui ne peuvent pas être défendues, précisément parce qu‟elles n‟existent pour personne, si ce n‟est que pour elles-mêmes et pour leurs agresseurs. ***”

Cliquez ici pour télécharger le rapport.

Cliquez ici pour télécharger le rapport.

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Thomas More Institute: Towards a Sustainable Security in the Maghreb – An Opportunity for the Region

The Thomas More Institute has released a report, “Towards a Sustainable Security in the Maghreb –  An Opportunity for the Region, a Commitment for the European Union.”  The report was released on 7 April at the “Maghreb and the European Union: Enhancing the partnership for a sustainable security” conference in Brussels.

From the Executive Summary:  “The relationship between Europe and the Maghreb is a complex, multidimensional and somewhat passionate one. The two areas share a common history and are bound by common interests. United against a number of joint challenges (economic development, regional stability, fight against terrorism, migration, sustainable development), it is time for the two shores of the Mediterranean to reconsider the basis for their cooperation. [***] The EU is well aware of what is at stake and must now look for ways of making a more active commitment in the region, particularly on sensitive issues such as human rights and migration. [***] The question of migration, which extends as far as the Sahelian area, is another area of cooperation which needs to be looked into in more depth, since the EU’s policy of limiting migratory flows can no longer be restricted to the northern border of the Maghreb. Reinforcing the role of the European agency FRONTEX throughout the area, for example by opening regional offices and assigning resources, is one possible solution. Intensifying efforts to coordinate development assistance policies between the EU and Maghreb countries to help Sub-Saharan African countries that represent sources of immigration is another solution that should not be ignored.”

A further excerpt: “A need for increased cooperation between the European Union and the Maghreb – Europe’s policy on migration is based on the principle that the great era of mass migrations is over, replaced by a new international division of labour, whereby a foreign workforce is substituted for the national workforce, and by policies that involve returning and rehabilitating non-Europeans in their countries of origin and internal mobility for Europeans within an area with no interior borders. European countries – and the Community, followed by the EU – concentrated their efforts on border control, in a securitarian view dictated by the migratory risk and concerns about the challenges of integration. Schengen relegated the countries of the Maghreb, and others, to the status of “outsider countries”, with which human circulation is restricted. This logic was maintained by the militarisation of borders which started in 1988 when barriers were built around the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, then as of 2002 by the installation of the Integrated System of External Vigilance (SIVE) around Gibraltar and later along the Spanish coasts – including the Canary isles – comprising twenty-five detection points, a dozen mobile radar and ten or so patrol units. The attacks perpetrated on September 11th reinforced the security component and, following the creation of FRONTEX (European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders) in 2005, other areas were militarised, with preventive sea and air patrols in the Mediterranean and even in the Atlantic, near the Canary isles. The EU also provides its members with technical assistance. [***] The Maghreb has made a real effort to contribute and cooperate with the EU in the fight against immigration.  In February 2004, Morocco and Spain started joint patrols and in 2008, cooperation was reinforced by improving controls in the ports of Tangier and Algeciras.  According to the Spanish authorities, the result was an overall drop of 60% in illegal immigration originating in Morocco between 2007 and 2008.  The decrease in illegal Moroccans was reportedly around 38%. However, reinforced controls caused a shift in migratory routes. According to the Italian Ministry of the Interior, the number of illegal immigrants arriving in Italy by sea rose by 75% between 2007 and 2008. 14 000 people arrived in Italy illegally in 2007, whereas the figure was in excess of 40 000 in 2008. Following the signature of the Benghazi treaty between Italy and Libya on 30th August 2008, Italy obtained greater assistance from Tripoli in the form of bilateral cooperation on illegal immigration and the application of the December 2007 agreement on joint patrols off the Libyan coasts, plus the installation of radars by Finmeccanica at Libya’s southern borders.”

Click here for full Report.

Main routes of present-day Trans-Saharan migrations

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8th Conference of the Foreign Ministers of the Western Mediterranean (“5+5”)

Foreign Ministers from the so-called “5+5” countries, France, Spain, Italy, Malta, Portugal, Morocco, Algeria, Libya, Mauritania, and Tunisia, are meeting this week in Tunis to discuss a variety of issues including migration, which will be discussed at the plenary session on 16 April.

Click here (FR) and here (FR) for articles.

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Frontex Operation Indalo 2010

Operation Indalo, which focuses on the interception of migrants travelling from North Africa, primarily Algeria, to Spain, will take place from June to September this year and will focus primarily on migrant arrivals on the coasts of the Spanish provinces of Murcia and Almeria.

Last year’s Operation Indalo took place in September and October, used assets from Spain, Italy, France, Belgium, Germany and Portugal, and resulted in the detention of approximately 500 migrants.

Click here for article (ES).

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CARIM Mediterranean Migration 2008-2009 Report

Noted recently in the Newsletter of the Real Instituto Elcano:

CARIM MEDITERRANEAN MIGRATION 2008-2009 REPORT, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies, San Domenico di Fiesole (FI): European University Institute, October 2009, Edited by Philippe Fargues

MIGRATIONS MÉDITERRANÉENNES, RAPPORT 2008-2009, Octobre 2009, Sous la direction de Philippe Fargues

An excerpt:

“The period covered in this latest report, the years 2007 and 2008, is characterised by the accentuation of the migratory trends described in previous reports1: emigration from South and East Mediterranean countries (SEM) is continuing at a steady rate, while immigration to these countries is increasing, particularly in various irregular forms. [***]

Transit Migrants

Transit migrants in the SEM countries are people who cannot reach the destination of their choice (Europe) for lack of the required visa. They are waiting to find a way to reach this destination and over time their transit becomes stay. All the SEM countries, from Mauritania in the west to Turkey in the East, have, over the course of the last two decades, been transformed into transit countries for those travelling to Europe.

How many transit migrants are there in the SEM countries? The statistics in this area are even more inadequate than those for de facto refugees or irregular migrant workers. Aggregating figures provided by the police and various NGOs allows for a maximum estimation of 200,000 transit migrants in the region (Table 7).

Table 7: Transit migrants present in SEM countries around 2005

Country                        Estimated number

Algeria                           > 10,000

Turkey                           > 50,000

Libya                              > 10,000

Mauritania                   ± 30,000

Morocco                      > 10,000

Egypt, Israel, Jordan,

Lebanon, Palestine,

Syria, Tunisia              Not available

Total SEM                     < 200,000

Sources: CARIM, Irregular Migration Series http://www.carim.org/index.php?areaid=8&contentid=235&callTopic=7

According to data collected by an Italian NGO on deaths and disappearances at sea (Table 8), it would seem that the number of clandestine sea crossings from SEM countries to Europe is not increasing (in fact it may even have decreased in 2008) but the routes are changing. The most ancient route across the Straits of Gibraltar is being used less and less and has been successively replaced by that from Mauritania, or even Senegal, to the Canary Islands (on which traffic peaked in 2006), from Turkey to the Greek Islands of the Dodecanese (on which traffic peaked in 2007) and lastly from Libya to Italy on which traffic peaked in 2008).

How many transit migrants are there who attempt (sometimes successfully) the crossing to Europe? And for how many does transit in the SEM countries become a more long period of stay? The rare surveys carried out in the Maghreb or in Turkey do not allow us to assess this. With the extension of their stay in countries initially seen as a place of transit, transit migrants soon become mixed up with the more significant mass of migrant workers in irregular situation. On the other hand, it is not always possible to distinguish them from refugees. The two groups exist side by side in what the HCR calls flows of “mixed migration” where transit migrants and refugees, sometimes from the same countries of provenance, resort to the same smugglers and find themselves in the same circumstances.

Table 8: Dead and missing persons on sea routes of irregular migration from SEM to Europe 2000 – 2008

Year\ Route      Sicily +             Gibraltar +

Sardinia           Ceuta & Melilla

2000                   0                           127

2001                     8                           157

2002                     236                     106

2003                     413                     108

2004                     206                    64

2005                     437                    146

2006                     302                    215

2007                     621                    142

2008                     702                    216

Total                     2,925                1,281

Year\ Route      Canary              Aegean Sea

Islands

2000                   16                         32

2001                     40                        102

2002                     39                        94

2003                     130                      81

2004                     232                      103

2005                     185                      98

2006                     1,035                  73

2007                     745                      257

2008                      136                      181

Total                       2,558                 1,021

Year                Total All Routes

2000                 175

2001                   307

2002                   475

2003                   732

2004                   605

2005                   866

2006                   1,625

2007                   1,765

2008                   1,235

Total                  7,785

Source : http://fortresseurope.blogspot.com/

[***]”

Click here for link to full Report in both English and francais.

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Informal Meeting of European Union Defence Ministers

An Informal Meeting of EU Defence Ministers was held in Mallorca last week to discuss the EU Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) established by the Treaty of Lisbon.

A decision was taken at the meeting to expand the objectives of Operation Atalanta to include the surveillance and control of Somali ports where pirate ships are based.  This decision will be implemented later in the month of March as weather conditions in the region improve.  The decision represents a potentially significant expansion of the EU’s anti-piracy operations.

Also attending the Informal Meeting were the ministers of defence from Algeria, Libya, Morocco, Mauritania and Tunisia.  A side meeting was conducted with regard to improving co-operation in matters of security in the Euro-Mediterranean zone.  The side talks pertained to the so-called “5+5 Western Mediterranean Defence Initiative” or more simply the “5 + 5 Initiative”.

Spanish Minister of Defence, Carme Chacón, who chaired the Informal Meeting said in regard to the meetings with the defence ministers from the five Maghreb countries:

“Spain is very clear on the fact that the Mediterranean is a sea of opportunities, but if we let our guard down then it can become a sea of problems – and we share this vision with all the associations we are involved in. At the moment it is a sea of peace and tranquillity, but both North and South must work together to tackle the dangers and new threats of the 21st Century, such as international terrorism, drug smuggling and organised crime. We must put our surveillance and maritime safety capacities into action in order to combat these threats, which could become an area of concern or a problem if we do not deal with them properly. And Spain will not forget this. In terms of the initiative of bringing together the countries of Europe and the Maghreb, we would like it to be not just the Spanish Presidency that sees to hold these meetings, but for the EU to be able to sit down regularly with these countries to discuss issues relating to the Mediterranean Sea, which must carry on being a source of opportunities rather than one of concern.”

Click here, here, here, and here for Press Releases from the Informal Meeting.

Cliquez ici pour un article (blog post) en francais.

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“Raïs Hamidou 10” – Exercice algéro-français de surveillance et de sécurité maritime

Du portail des sous marins:   “Dans le cadre général du renforcement de la coopération bilatérale entre l’Algérie et la France, l’exercice baptisé “Raïs Hamidou 10” se déroulera du 2 au 19 mars 2010 en Méditerranée Occidentale, entre l’Algérie et la France.”

“Cet exercice s’inscrit dans le cadre général de la dynamique de coopération et d’amitié entre les deux pays (accord de coopération dans le domaine de la défense signé le 21 juin 2008).  …  Il vise à permettre le développement et l’interopérabilité entre les unités et le partage des expériences et des connaissances, favorisant ainsi l’aptitude des deux parties à opérer conjointement et à répondre, le cas échéant à une situation de crise (pollution, sinistre en mer, trafic illicite etc.) ….”

Cliquez ici pour l’article.

Du site officel de la Préfecture maritime de la Méditerranée:

Complément d’information : Qui est le Raïs Hamidou ?  Raïs Hamidou Ben Ali naquit vers 1770 à Alger. Il fut le dernier des grands chefs de la marine algérienne de la période ottomane, et, à ce titre, il joua un rôle décisif dans la défense de la ville d’Alger. Les Européens ont reconnu dans leurs écrits l’intelligence peu commune et l’extrême habileté du Raïs.

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“Harraga: La menace de la prison n’a rien changé”

El Watan: “Un an après la loi du 25 février 2009 criminalisant la harga [en Algérie], ils sont nombreux à ne plus vouloir partir. Mais pas par crainte de finir en prison dans leur pays. …  Les passeurs exigent des sommes énormes ! Les prix pratiqués aujourd’hui peuvent atteindre les 400 000 DA pour l’Espagne à partir de Ghazaouet.”

“Hocine Zehouane, président de la Ligue algérienne des droits de l’homme, a publié, en 2009, un rapport accablant relatif à cette tragédie : 36 000 jeunes harraga et environ 4 000 Algériens croupiraient dans les prisons espagnoles. Sans parler des 600 corps dans les morgues d’Almeria (Espagne). … « Les Européens ont mis beaucoup d’argent dans le programme Frontex (agence dotée de moyens de détection, de surveillance de toute migration par terre, par mer et même par air) et ont financé les régimes autoritaires du Sud (Libye, Tunisie, Algérie, Maroc) pour bloquer ce type d’émigration clandestine. Je crois que si les jeunes ont furieusement envie d’émigrer, ils n’ont pas envie de mourir en mer, ils n’ont pas envie de traîner misérablement dans les centres de détention s’ils arrivent en vie, ils n’ont pas envie d’être ensuite expulsés vers leur pays. »”

“Kamel Belabed, porte-parole du collectif des familles de harraga disparus, est du même avis : « Les jeunes s’informent, lisent la presse et ont accès à Internet. Ils savent, pour la plupart, qu’il y a maintenant une ‘coopération’ avec l’Union européenne pour l’interception des barques de nos harraga. Nous savons que le programme MEDA [NF – Règlement (CE) n° 1488/96 du Conseil du 23 juillet 1996] décidé, semble-t-il, pour ‘un partenariat euromediterranéen afin de garantir la paix, la stabilité et la prospérité’ du bassin, cachait mal une finalité qui ne disait pas son nom : l’externalisation des frontières de l’Europe ! Le programme MEDA a porté le montant de l’aide à l’Algérie à 10 millions d’euros. Le principal bénéficiaire de cette aide a été la police algérienne des frontières… Ceci en 2005.”

“L’Union européenne est devenue une des sources des projets de loi au Maghreb jusqu’en Egypte. C’est sous sa houlette que la loi 09-01 a été adoptée comme ont été adoptées les mêmes lois dans chacun des pays sud-méditerranéens. »

“[D]’autres réfléchissent à de nouvelles pistes pour atteindre l’eldorado. A leurs yeux, moins coûteuses et moins risquées. Comme la Turquie, plus précisément Izmir, la luxueuse station balnéaire. « Pour moins de 150 000 DA, vous êtes en Italie ! confie Mourad, … refoulé d’Italie y a quelques mois. Le procédé est simple : on prend l’avion pour la Turquie, ensuite le train ou un ferry pour Izmir, où des passeurs nous attendent. Le coût de la traversée entre la Turquie et la Grèce est de 500 euros environ. Pour atteindre l’Italie, avec l’aide du même baron de l’immigration clandestine, vous devez payer 1000 euros environ. »”

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Frontex Presentation at European Defence Agency Annual Conference

Rustamas Liubajevas, Head, Frontex Joint Operations Unit, presented a lecture entitled “Frontex within integrated Border management concept – Structural approach in planning capability” at the recent Annual Conference of the European Defence Agency.

Copies of some of his slides are reproduced here.

Click here for full slide presentation.

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