Three fronts

DAKAR/TRIPOLIS/KIEW/BERLIN | | libyenukraine

DAKAR/TRIPOLIS/KIEW/BERLIN (Own report) - After his visit to Berlin, the Senegalese president, Abdoulaye Wade declared that he was prepared to continue cooperation with the European defense against refugees. Following a talk with German President, Horst Koehler, Wade made public that he will do everything, in the future, to keep Senegalese citizens in the country. Numerous Senegalese are currently seeking to emigrate to Europe, because the EU's industrial fishing fleets have ruined what had traditionally been the country's main branch of trade and driven a large number of the population into poverty. European politicians are signaling progress on the anti-refugee front also from Libya. The negotiations in that country were centered around arranging the deployment of EU border-control technology on the Libyan landlocked borders. The discussion about the building of camps in Libya, which the former German Interior Minister Otto Schily (SPD) had supported, is also progressing. The refugee camps in the Ukraine serve as a model. The conditions are catastrophic on this third front in the European defense against migrants. This is being reported by international observers, whose substantial criticism have led to no alterations. In these camps, fundamental rights are still being withheld from the imprisoned refugees, Christopher Nsoh told german-foreign-policy.com. Nsoh is carrying out a scientific investigation of the European defense against migration and had recently visited the Ukrainian assembly camp.

As Senegalese President, Abdoulaye Wade, confirmed last week in Berlin, Senegal will strive even more intensively to prevent its citizens from departing to the European Union. Already at the end of August, giving in to massive pressure from the Spanish government, Dakar had consented to participate with Spanish border control units in controlling Senegal's territorial waters. In the meantime the bi-national patrols, that are supported by reconnaissance flights from other EU states, are reporting their first success in the hunt for refugees.[1] In return, President Wade has requested material compensations. The deal that was made is to thwart those seeking to leave the country, from making an uprising. Wade told the Africa Association of the German Foreign Trade Federation that German businesses are welcomed in his country. According to data of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, bilateral commercial exchange is still "at a low level."[2] In addition the Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development assured the Senegalese president of further support. "We must help to offer people a perspective at the local level", said Heidemarie Wieczorek Zeul (SPD) last week.[3] The German minister left unmentioned both the causes of the poverty in Senegal as well as the European robbery of resources off the coast of the country.

From Fishing Boats to Refugee Barges

Over the past few decades, the living perspectives for large sectors of the Senegalese population have been systematically destroyed - with the help of the EU, including their German member. In Senegal, large sectors of the population live from fishing, which even today accounts for 15 percent of all employment and a third of the country's export income. Since 1981 EU nations' ultramodern industrial fishing fleets have been exploiting the natural wealth off the coast of West Africa and were also poaching in Senegalese territorial waters. Technologically far superior, the European fleets are not only depriving Senegalese fishermen of their export opportunities, they are also exhausting the West African fish population. Experts have been warning, to no avail, for decades, against the dramatic consequences that over fishing would have on the country's population, whose basis of subsistence is being destroyed.[4] The larger extended families, in the meantime, can no longer subsist from the low catch, that Senegalese fishermen can achieve today. A growing number of inhabitants have begun to use their fishing boats as refugee barges, and follow the path taken by the plundered wealth: to the European Union.[5]

Desert borders

The European refugee hunt, that with growing success, is taking place off the coast of West Africa, is also making headway in the Mediterranean. Libya has been refusing to allow patrols in its territorial waters by the EU border control agency, Frontex. As the country's government now explains, it does not exclude a future partial transfer of sovereignty rights to the EU. But Tripoli is demanding technology in exchange: speedboats (for monitoring the coast) as well as helicopters, all-terrain vehicles and night-vision devices (for use in the desert) according to the Libyan Minister for European Affairs, to be able to make early interceptions of the Central and East African economic refugees.[6] Libyan land borders are approximately 4,000 kilometers long, crossing the North African desert, reaching deep into the continent. The high-grade arming of these borders consists of a supplementary forward displacement of the EU's defense shield against migration and a new contribution to the global militarization of borders, to limit the uncontrollable movements of escape and resistance to the peripheral impoverished regions. The EU border regime reaches down to the center of the Sahara, where years ago attempts by German security forces' to take control have been recorded.[7]

Torture

In Libya there are various facilities to detain migrants (police stations, prisons, camps). Only some of their locations are known. As was learned from a study, made at the American University in Cairo, Italy has financed the building of a Libyan refugee camp and now wants to establish other camps at two desert locations (Kufra, Sabha). The study documents cases of torture and other serious violations of human rights, as well as illegitimate and arbitrary arrests. Migrants originating from countries south the Sahara are often also subjected to racist discrimination.[8] Two years ago, the German Interior Minister, at that time, Otto Schily (SPD), had promoted Libya's construction of the refugee camps, now being pushed by Italy.

Catastrophic

In Eastern Europe as well - the third front of the European defense shield against refugees - there is still incidence of the violation of rights. Human rights organizations criticized conditions in the camps in the Ukraine already last year. Migrants are being detained there, whose entry into EU states is not desired. The space and sanitary conditions, that the incarcerated are submitted to, are catastrophic.[9] Obviously the situation has not improved. This is what Christopher Nsoh reported to german-foreign-policy.com. Nsoh is doing scientific research on the European defense against migration and recently visited the Ukrainian camps. He reports that - aside from many other grievances - the barracks are still overcrowded; in the Pavshino camp, "the refugees are locked down in their cells at seven in the evening - without toilets."[10]

Please read also the Interview mit Christopher Nsoh and Festung Europa.

[1] Whereas the Senegalese government was able - through months of resistance - to have it implemented, that patrols on its territory would be carried out with their participation, EU border control units intercept boats, completely under their own sovereignty, in Mauretanian waters. See also Master of the Seas and Lagebilder
[2] Beziehungen zwischen Senegal und Deutschland; Länder- und Reiseinformationen des Auswärtigen Amts
[3] Bundesentwicklungsministerin Wieczorek-Zeul trifft den senegalesischen Staatspräsidenten Abdoulaye Wade; Pressemitteilung des Bundesministeriums für wirtschaftliche Zusammenarbeit und Entwicklung 05.09.2006
[4] An expert of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) determined back in 2002: "the collapse of the fish population (...) endangers the food supply of the fish dependent populations of West African nations." EU-Fangflotten fischen Gewässer in Westafrika leer; Pressemitteilung des WWF 28.06.2006
[5] The fishing accord between the EU and Senegal has recently expired and has yet to be renewed. That accord, which exists since 1981, and is regularly renewed, has permitted the predatory fish exploitation by EU states off the Senegalese coast, for an annual pittance, most recently for 16 million Euros per year.
[6] Libya critical of EU plans to curb illegal immigration; MaltaMedia News 07.09.2006
[7] Since 2003 Berlin has been directly participating in western attempts at controlling rebellious Islamic movements in the North African desert area. See also Maghreb im Visier, Weltinnenpolitik and Prosecution (I)
[8] Sara Hamood: African Transit Migration through Libya to Europe: The Human Cost; The American University in Cairo January 2006
[9] see also Um jeden Preis
[10] Please read also the Interview mit Christopher Nsoh.