In the first half of 2023, Tunisia has made tremendous efforts in rescuing illegal migrants, with a total of 15,327 individuals saved by the Tunisian Security Services.
This announcement was made by the Tunisian Interior Minister, Kamal Feki, during a press conference held on Friday.
The majority of these migrants, around 95 percent, are of African or sub-Saharan origin. Recognizing the urgent need for humanitarian assistance, the security services have been working in close collaboration with international organizations to ensure a coordinated and effective response.
To effectively handle this crisis, the Tunisian security forces have been actively engaged in providing immediate aid, as well as conducting extensive fieldwork. These efforts aim to ensure the safety and well-being of the rescued migrants, while also preventing further exploitation and harm.
However, Minister Feki expressed his concern over some untrue reports made by international organizations, such as a recent statement from the United Nations (UN) deputy spokesperson regarding the alleged mistreatment of African refugees and migrants at the Tunisian borders.
The UN deputy spokesperson had voiced their distress over the expulsion of migrants, refugees, and asylum seekers from Tunisia to the borders with Libya and Algeria. They highlighted that several individuals have lost their lives at the border with Libya, and many, including pregnant women and children, currently find themselves in dire conditions with limited access to food and water.
Minister Feki vehemently refuted these claims, stating that the Tunisian security forces have been providing extensive support and assistance to the rescued migrants. The government has taken significant steps to ensure their safety and well-being, including working closely with international organizations to provide necessary aid.
He further emphasized the need for accurate information and expressed his willingness to cooperate with international bodies to address any legitimate concerns. However, it is crucial to distinguish between accurate reporting and unfounded allegations that tarnish the reputation of Tunisia’s efforts in handling the migrant crisis.
The Tunisian government remains committed to its humanitarian obligations and will continue to take necessary measures to ensure the safety and welfare of all migrants within its borders. The collaboration between Tunisian security services and international organizations plays a vital role in effectively addressing the challenges posed by irregular migration.
The ongoing efforts to rescue and provide support to migrants in Tunisia are a testament to the country’s dedication to upholding international human rights standards and protecting vulnerable individuals. Tunisia’s actions serve as an example of how nations can come together to address the complex issue of migration in a humane and compassionate manner.
As the year progresses, Tunisia will continue to monitor and address the situation, working alongside international partners to find sustainable solutions that prioritize the welfare of migrants while also respecting the country’s national security interests.