The European Union plans to spend millions of dollars in cubing the flow of migrants from Africa.
The EU announced $53 million in funding, to help boost Libya’s border and coast guards to prevent migrants crossing the Mediterranean to reach Europe.
The body announced the program on Friday, saying that it would be implemented by Italy, the country where most migrants departing Libya arrive.
The program will provide equipment and training to Libyan coast and border guards.
EU Foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini says that while the EU works to help end Libya’s political crisis, the bloc will continue assisting Libyan authorities “in their capacity to address the migration flows, rescue migrants, making sure that human rights are respected, and fight against the smuggling networks.”
Around 600,000 migrants have reached Italy by sea from North Africa since 2014. Most came through Libya, where people smugglers operate with impunity amid the turmoil that has gripped the country since Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in 2011.
After a deal was struck in Paris by Libya’s rival factions, the Tripoli based government announced it had invited Italy to send its warships to its waters to help curb that flow of migrants. If The Italian parliament approves the request, the European nation will send a mission by the end of August.