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From migrants to refugees: The circle continues


A US Border Patrol agent keeps watch at a gate On the US-Mexico border fence on June 18, 2018 near San Benito, Texas.<br />President Donald Trump vowed on June 18 that the United States would not become a “migrant camp,” as he faced soaring pressure to end the separation of immigrant families on America’s southern border. / AFP PHOTO / Loren ELLIOTT

Sir: From the United States of America to Europe, the world is battling an exponential rise in undocumented and irregular migration, which poses several challenges on the countries of origin, transit and destination, as well as migrants themselves.

Right now, the US is up to stem the number of illegal entries from Mexico.

In 2017, the US border patrol reportedly arrested 341,084 migrants and refugees along the southwestern border of both countries, this was a 44 per cent drop from the 611,689 migrants arrested in 2016.


Yet, over 412 migrant deaths were recorded on either side of the border.

The narrative of arrest, rejection and death is also obtainable in Europe.

The International Organization for Migration, IOM, reported that 3,116 Mediterranean deaths were recorded alongside 171,635 migrants and refugees entry to Europe by the sea in 2017.

Migrants who embark on irregular journeys are often vulnerable to discrimination, exploitation, abuse and sometimes, death.

Many of such migrants are victims of human smuggling, trafficking, prostitution, rape and a vast array of inhuman treatments – which constitute a grave violation of their fundamental human rights.

For many Africans, especially, Nigerians who embark on an undocumented travel to Europe, the story is often gory and filled with utmost ignorance, greed, hopelessness and helplessness.

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