13000 illegal migrants returned to Nigeria in two years, says IOM

The UN-International Organisation on Migration (IOM) says it has been involved in the evacuation of over 12,700 irregular migrants from certain countries back to Nigeria in the last two years.

The Public Information Officer of the organisation in Nigeria, Jorge Galindo, disclosed this on Thursday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Enugu.

Mr Galindo spoke on the sidelines of a media dialogue with Nigerian editors and heads of media establishments organised by the IOM.

He said that out of the lot, the organisation had initiated integration programmes for about 5000.

He recalled that the IOM’s operations started in the country in 2001.

Mr Galindo said that they had since begun to implement a host of different projects in Abuja and Lagos as well as addressing humanitarian issues in North East Nigeria.

On the European Union/IOM Joint Initiative on Migration, Mr Galindo said that their aim was to bring back about 13,000 irregular migrants trapped in Libya and other African countries back to Nigeria.

He said that the first flight that brought irregular migrants back to Nigeria under the initiative was on April 11, 2017.

“We assist migrants returning from Libya, Mali and other countries by providing them with assistance, protection and channel them through appropriate integration programmes.

“There are still more migrants that are trapped in horrible conditions in Libya and we will continue this programme for many more to return voluntarily and safely. (NAN)

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