Albania-Italy Deal Stirs Reactions Among Migrants Waiting in Tunisia

Albania-Italy Deal Stirs Reactions Among Migrants

Albania-Italy Deal Stirs Reactions Among Migrants

Migrants and asylum seekers in Tunisia’s capital expressed mixed opinions on Thursday regarding Albania’s controversial migration deal with Italy. Albania’s parliament approved a deal allowing the country to host thousands of asylum seekers for Italy, despite opposition from lawmakers and human rights groups.

Among the migrants currently sheltering at a camp in Tunis, some are hesitant about Albania as a destination. However, others are open to the idea, especially those fleeing war or repression in their home countries.

Ahmed, a Sudanese refugee, emphasized the need for safety and security, expressing uncertainty about what awaits them in Albania. He mentioned that they support any decision that offers help, as they are already escaping from the impact of war.

The five-year deal entails Albania providing shelter for up to 3,000 migrants rescued from international waters at any time. Asylum requests are expected to take approximately a month to process, potentially resulting in up to 36,000 asylum seekers being sent to Albania within a year.

It’s noteworthy that Albania is not a member of the European Union, and sending asylum seekers outside the EU has sparked controversy. Despite criticism from rights groups, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has endorsed the deal as an example of innovative thinking.

The agreement, signed in November between Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama and Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni, aligns with efforts to distribute the responsibility of addressing migration among European countries. The move is part of broader attempts to address the challenges posed by migration and share the burden more evenly across the continent.

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