The EU Trust Fund for Africa adopted Wednesday a €90 million program to step up the protection of migrants and reinforce migration management in Libya, upon proposal from the European Commission, a press release by the European Commission indicated.
Besides the support for improved migration management in the country, the comprehensive €90 million program is going to reinforce protection and resilience of migrants, refugees and host communities in Libya.
“For the European Union, Libya and the Libyans have been and stay a top priority. We are working to promote a political solution to the Libyan crisis and to support the Libyan authorities on the many challenges they have to face, including the managing of the migration flows.” The EU High Representative, Federica Mogherini said in the press release.
She also stressed that the European Union is doing its part and the Libyan authorities have to do theirs, in an implied response to the statements of the Head of the Presidential Council of the UN-proposed government, Fayez Al-Serraj who earlier this week accused the EU of giving Libya empty promises on the migration cooperation level.
“This newly adopted program will address the needs of the migrants and contribute to a better management of migration flows. In addition, the projects will also support improved socio-economic conditions for all in Libya, and thus contribute to reducing the drivers of irregular migration and make the smugglers’ task more difficult”. The Commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, Johannes Hahn, said.
According to the detailed EU statement, the plans of the program include reducing the number of crossings and saving lives at sea; stepping up the fight against smugglers and traffickers;
and development of local communities in Libya to improve their socio-economic situation and enhance their resilience as host communities.
In addition, the program will also cover protection of migrants, increasing resettlement and promoting assisted voluntary returns and reintegration, as well as managing migrant flows through the southern Libyan border plus establishing increased cooperation with Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.