African Exodus Puts Pressure on Europe
Le Monde has provided a graphic which illustrates the extraordinary pressures on southern Europe as Africans in search of a better life attempt illegal debarkation in southern Europe. The sheer numbers of desperate human beings smuggled into Europe for a six-month period in 2004 is shocking:
Spain: Last year from January to July, 2004, 7,295 illegal immigrants were arrested: 4,124 in the waters of the Canary Islands and 3,149 in the straits of Gibraltar. In Melilla alone, 38,000 people were turned away.
Italy: Between January and May 2004, 1,753 illegal immigrants landed in Sicily while 4,500 others debarked on the tiny island of Lampedusa. On the mainly, 46,000 illegals have been arrested.
The numbers of hopeful immigrants continues to skyrocket. There isn't a day that goes by without dozens of Africans being plucked out of the waters around Lampedusa.
The Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla in Morocco, where the European Union meets Africa, were been the scenes last week of rioting and death as hundreds of African participated in an assault by human tsunami on the gates of the city. Some were trampled and others shot dead by Spanish security forces.
The frightful waste of lives, money and resources on Bush's hopeless War on Terror might have been dedicated to imaginative solutions to African crisis: cities, farms, jobs, schools and opportunities for desperate multitutes beset by desertification, shrinking resources or warlordism in Mali, Nigeria, Cameroon, Liberia, Senegal, Mauritania, Western Sahara, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Somalia instead of senseless, continuing turmoil in Iraq.