Migrants in Tunisia react to Albania Italy deal

Migrants in Tunisia react to Albania Italy deal

Migrants in Tunisia expressed divided opinions as to a new Italy-Albania migration deal on February 23rd, according to Africa News and AFP.

AP reported the approval of the he five-year deal by Albania’s parliament on February 22nd, which could see up to 3,000 migrants rescued from international waters sent to Albania at a time. With asylum requests expected to take a month to process, the country could expect up to 36,000 migrants arriving annually.

Although Albania is not an EU member state, the controversial deal was endorsed by European Commission president, Ursula von der Leyen, but has drawn strong opposition from lawmakers and human rights groups.

The deal’s approval came as unwelcome news for many migrants planning the crossing to Europe from Tunisia, although some, especially those seeking asylum said they were open to the idea.

Ahmed, a Sudanese refugee stated: “We need safety and security because we don’t know what will happen to us in Albania. If Europe’s decision will help us, we support it and hope they will help us because we are already fleeing from war.”

READ: Tunisia: Migrants face appalling conditions, despite EU funding

The agreement was initiated on November 6th between Albania’s Prime Minister Edi Rama and Italian premier, Giorgia Meloni, as part of Italy’s efforts to address the burden of mass Mediterranean migration to its shores.

Rama stated in a February 22nd X post: “Albania is standing together with Italy by choosing to act like an EU member state and agreeing to share a burden that Europe should face united as a whole family in the face of a daring challenge that transcends traditional left and right divides.”

AP / Africa News/AFP


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