EU and African leaders agreed on an Action Plan for migration and mobility today as hundreds of African migrants hung for hours on the fences surrounding the Spanish enclave of Melilla in North Africa in an attempt to enter EU ground.
During the EU-Africa summit held in Brussels, leaders from the two continents agreed to upscale their efforts
-to combat trafficking by strengthening partnership and cooperation on prevention, protection and prosecution;
-to fight irregular migration to avoid the dramatic consequences of irregular migration and to safeguard the lives of migrants;
-to strengthen the nexus between migration and development, including by stepping up efforts to significantly reduce the costs of remittances, consolidate the African Institute for Remittances and strengthen policy frameworks for enhancing Diaspora engagement;
-to advance legal migration and mobility, by better organising legal migration and fostering well-managed mobility between and within the continents;
-to strengthen international protection of migrants, including through the implementation of international and regional instruments for the protection of refugees, asylum seekers and internally displaced persons.
European and African leaders also issued a declaration covering the entire range of EU-Africa relations and pledged to support to the AU decision to fast track the establishment of a Continental Free Trade Area (CFTA) in Africa and offers to draw on its experience of building the Single Market to provide capacity support to this initiative.
On April 2 a mini-summit was held on the Central African Republic (CAR). The EU this week launched Eufor CAR, a special force whose first soldiers will arrive in Bangue by the end of April to support the French and African Union forces that are stationed in the country to prevent its heading for an all-out civil war.