Morocco succeeds in curbing illegal emigration, minister
Morocco, Local, 6/10/2005
Morocco succeeded in 2004 to curb by 27% the number of candidates to illegal emigration, and recorded a 61% increase of dismantled of illegal emigration networks, said Thursday, Moroccan Interior minister Al Mostafa Sahel.
Speaking at a convention on immigration held at the French National Assembly and sponsored by the "Parti de l'Union pour un Mouvement populaire" (UMP), attended also by French Interior Minister, Nicolas Sarkozy, Sahel ascribed this achievement to Morocco's actions, and to the human and material resources it has mobilized to sort this problem out.
Among these actions, Sahel recalled the enforcement, in November 2003, of the Act on the entry and stay of foreigners, under which human smugglers are liable to sentences ranging between ten years and life imprisonement.
The minister also recalled the creation, in his department, of two sections specialized in illegal emigration deterrence that allows for keeping permanently the pace with the growingly sophisticated emigration strategies.
Sahel stressed that international cooperation is a key-factor to solve the problem, highlighting that the instances of cooperation with France, Spain, the EU and some African countries such as Nigeria constitute a model of North-South and South-South partnership.
The official said that the problem of emigration should not be addressed only from the security viewpoint, but needs to be accompanied with "partnerships in the political, economic and financial fields."
Taking the floor on the same occasion, France's Interior Minister, Nicolas Sarkozy, affirmed that cooperation between his country and Morocco in countering terrorism "is not a theoretical cooperation, only," stressing that the two countries cooperate closely on this issue.
Sarkozy underlined that Morocco is not only a "country of emigration, but also a country of immigration" taking into account the flow of immigrants that arrive in the kingdom from sub-Saharan Africa.
The two ministers held Thursday a working meeting on issues of mutual interest, including local collectivities and territorial administering matters as well as police departments cooperation.
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