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Algeria Rejects Proposal to Build Concentration Zones for Migrants

Algeria on Sunday said it is targeted by a campaign of unfounded criticism over its illegal migration policy, reiterating its refusal to establish concentration zones for undocumented migrants.

These remarks were delivered by Algerian Interior Minister Nouredine Bedoui at the opening of the sixth Algerian-Nigerien Border Committee in Algiers.

Bedoui said his country has always been able to contain the illegal migration, and has always supported African migrants and spared no effort to assist them and provide them with humanitarian help of international standards.

He further indicated that Algeria rejects to establish on its lands any illegal migration concentration zones.

It is believed that Bedoui was responding to the criticism from some NGOs and human rights organizations over its decision to send home thousands of African illegal migrants, after demands for the North African nation to establish special zones to settle the undocumented migrants.

Last April, Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia noted that his country would continue to deport illegal immigrants in consultation with their countries of origin, stressing that illegal migration is a matter of “homeland security” and “public order.”

Bedoui further urged for stronger cooperation between Algeria and Niger to address the issue of illegal migration, by fighting criminal and human trafficking networks, as well as countering radicalism and violent extremism.

Noureddine Ayadi, Secretary-General of the Algerian Foreign Ministry, stressed that the illegal migration has been exacerbated by the conflicts and crises hitting Africa, suggesting the adoption of a comprehensive strategy that takes into account social, economic and political dimensions, in a way that promises to offer better living conditions to the refugees and encourage them to stay in their countries.

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