Tunisia and Italy stress on more efforts to tackle the increase of illegal immigration

LA VALLETTA (MALTA) (ITALPRESS/MNA) – Tunisia and Italy stressed the need to intensify efforts to deal with the increase of illegal immigration attempts towards European coasts, Italy in particular. This issue was discussed during a meeting between the Tunisian Parliamentary Speaker Ibrahim Bouderbala and the Italian Ambassador to Tunisia Alessandro Prunas in the Tunisian capital Tunis. “The illegal immigration issue requires boosting joint action at the bilateral and multilateral level in order to strengthen peace and security in the Mediterranean,” said Bouderbala. He also highlighted the role of parliaments in strengthening ties of friendship and cooperation, notably through the exchange of visits by parliamentarians. The Italian ambassador highlighted the fruitful cooperation and the conclusion of agreements in several areas including education, culture, higher education and vocational training. Prunas affirmed Italy’s commitment to providing support for Tunisia and to defending its position both within the region and at the level of the European Union. During his meeting with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni in Tunis on April 17, Tunisian President Kais Saied reiterated his country’s refusal to be a destination or transit point for illegal immigrants, calling for joint efforts to tackle the issue. Thousands of sub-Saharan migrants are living in makeshift tents in Tunisian olive groves for months, while keeping their hopes alive of reaching Europe.
According to Tunisian humanitarian NGOs, around 20,000 are in isolated areas near the towns of El Amra and Jebeniana, some 30 and 40 kilometres north of the port city of Sfax as they awaited their chance to make the perilous crossing towards Italy. Sfax is one of Tunisia’s main departure points for irregular migration to Europe by boat, and was once a hub for sub-Saharan migrants. Tens of thousands embarked from Sfax in 2023 because of its proximity to Italy, the closest European country.(ITALPRESS).

Foto: Agenzia Fotogramma

Source: medNews